Digital Scholarship Librarian, Research Commons | UBC Library | Vancouver Campus | Full-Time, 12-month term Librarian (without review)

Digital Scholarship Librarian
Research Commons, UBC Library, Vancouver Campus
Full-Time, 12-month term Librarian (without review)
Anticipated Start Date: December 1, 2021


The University of British Columbia Library is one of the largest academic libraries in Canada and consistently ranks among the top university research libraries in North America. UBC Library has 14 branches and divisions, two campuses (Vancouver and Kelowna), one off-site hospital library, and the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre – a multi-purpose teaching and learning facility.

The Library’s collection of 9.1M volumes includes 5.5M physical items, 3.6M ebooks, electronic journals, maps, audio, DVD/video and graphic materials, and bibliographic and fulltext databases.

Almost 300 knowledgeable employees – librarians, management and professional staff, support staff and student staff – provide users with the excellent resources and services that they need to further their research, teaching and learning.  Learn more about the UBC Library Strategic Plan and explore our aspirational values


The Koerner Library and UBC Library Research Commons provide services and collections to support the research needs of students, faculty and staff, with a prioritization for graduate students in the interdisciplinary UBC Library Research Commons.  The Digital Scholarship Librarian works within the Research Commons while providing campus-wide service development and support across all departments and in the Research Commons.

The Digital Scholarship Librarian establishes and develops a dynamic, multifaceted program that addresses the growing demand for digital scholarship partnerships and support on campus. The librarian works closely with the UBC Library Research Commons, Digital Programs and Services, Advanced Research Computing (ARC), and other campus entities to identify innovative and evolving digital tools and resources that advance scholarly investigation with novel digital tools and methods, while building on traditional research methodologies. The Digital Scholarship Librarian is a change agent, partner, and resource person for librarians and specialists involved in facilitating faculty and student digital projects and keeps abreast of the campus environment to identify emerging areas of interest.



  • Graduate degree from an accredited school of Library, Archival and Information Science.
  • Education or experience in the arts, humanities or social sciences.
  • Strong information and digital literacy skills.
  • A proactive, user-centred vision of services and a commitment to responsive and innovative service practices.
  • Familiarity with research methodologies across a variety disciplines including emerging tools and technologies relevant to the production, dissemination and reception of research.
  • Experience with digital scholarship research tools and approaches (e.g., text mining, data analysis and visualization, image analysis, augmented reality), and the ability to provide research and consultation services to researchers with varying levels of technical expertise.
  • Knowledge of data issues in the research/knowledge creation lifecycle.
  • Experience developing and delivering instructional sessions, teaching workshops, and making presentations.
  • Familiarity with bibliographic management tools in academic institutions and trends in library collections.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively and develop partnerships with faculty, librarians, and others to advance digital scholarship, within and across a complex organization.
  • Demonstrated ability to initiate, plan and carry out projects both independently and as member of a team; flexibility, and willingness to assume a variety of assignments.
  • Open to experiment with and improvise new ways of approaching processes, tasks or problems.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills; models and demonstrates good communication through active listening and appreciative inquiry and open to providing and receiving timely, constructive feedback.
  • Ability to recognize, respect and work effectively with individuals and groups with diverse perspectives and backgrounds; takes initiative in learning about language and issues relating to equity and diversity.


  • Experience developing a multifaceted program for a multidisciplinary constituency.
  • An academic background or related experience in digital scholarship.
  • Programming or scripting experience for digital scholarship.
  • Experience with writing grant proposals.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead change.
  • Experience supervising staff.


Reports to the Head, Research Commons. In consultation with the Head, plans and implements digital scholarship services for users. Consults and works collaboratively with colleagues both within the unit and across the UBC Library in the provision of services. A high degree of planning, collaboration and coordination is required with colleagues in the Library, including the Research Commons Librarian, Research Data Management Librarian, GIS and Maps Librarian, Data Librarian, Assessment Librarian, as well as Scholarly Communications and Digital Programs and Services.  Actively collaborates beyond the Library with UBC IT staff, ARC, and other campus and external partners.  The Digital Scholarship Librarian will foster successful adoption and application of digital scholarship methods and tools for research, teaching and learning, and do so in collaboration with faculty, students and librarians. Works in collaboration with UBC Collections Services to support the collections needs around digital scholarship topics including text and data mining and software licensing. May supervise the work of library staff and students in the provision of services.


Digital Scholarship

  • Provide expertise to scholars and students across disciplines on digital techniques and tools that will advance their research and the Library’s contributions to faculty and student research projects that are partially enabled by or completely reliant on digital methods.
  • Serve as a strategist and resource person for the Library on trends in the digital scholarship across disciplines. Provide support and regular training programs for the Library staff focused on digital scholarship tools, methods, and trends.
  • Work closely with colleagues in the Library to support digital scholarship related topics such as open scholarship, open access, open science, digital researcher identifiers, or impact metrics for non-traditional scholarship.
  • Provide training to students and faculty in digital scholarship topics, tools, and approaches through workshops, small-group sessions, and embedded project support.
  • Support digital scholarship projects where appropriate as an embedded consultant. Focus on supporting students and researchers with training for specific tools and methods used by the project. Support for project planning including advice on technical infrastructure decisions, tool selection, articulation of project work for grants and job descriptions, and best practices in digital project management.
  • Coordinate and disseminate information about digital scholarship on campus and connect scholars across disciplines to facilitate interdisciplinarity.
  • Identify and evaluate current and emerging digital tools and methodologies that support the interdisciplinary work of digital scholarship.
  • Develop strategies for collaboration, program planning, and support for interdisciplinary digital projects.
  • Conduct environmental scans of digital scholarship in UBC departments in conjunction with subject librarians and specialists to identify current and emerging scholarly projects for which digital tools and methodologies are appropriate.
  • Provide support and advice to library branches as the need arises, in order to develop strategies focused on scholars’ digital production and curation needs.

Collection and Resource Development

  • Assist in special projects and the development of collection policies that pertain to digital scholarship needs.
  • Support decision making around software licensing for Digital Scholarship Lab and virtual lab infrastructure in alignment with needs of digital scholars.
  • Provide input on collection development around resources that directly support digital scholarship work (eg. for text and data mining).

Assessment and Management

  • Initiate and participate in needs assessment, design, implementation, and evaluation for the provision of services in areas of responsibility, and for the Library; consult with Assessment Librarian to undertake this work and engage in evidence-based decision-making.
  • Plan and implement services for users, or other activities as assigned, which may include supervision of staff and/or student employees.

Professional Development and Library Service

  • Participate in University, Library and campus planning activities, committees and task forces as appropriate.
  • Participate in relevant conferences and meetings and make presentations where appropriate.
  • Undertake, or assist with, special projects or other temporary assignments as required.

Current Awareness:

  • Remain current with research developments and literature in the areas of specialization through scanning of journal and other professional literature, monitoring of electronic sources, and engagement with scholars. 
  • Maintain expertise in electronic information resources and technologies.
  • Keep current with changing professional expectations, services requirements, and developments in academic libraries.


This position will be filled as a full-time, term position.

Salary will be commensurate with experience and academic/professional qualifications.

We are seeking applications from Librarians with up to 5 years of experience.  However, all internal candidates will be considered regardless of years of experience and are encouraged to apply.

Equity and diversity are essential to academic excellence. An open and diverse community fosters the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented or discouraged. We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

To view the complete job description and to submit an application, please visit the UBC Careers page at by midnight October 29, 2021.