City of Boston

Research Collection Manager

Posted Date 10 months ago(11/15/2021 11:51 AM)
Req ID
Boston Public Library
Regular Full-Time
Collection Development
Salary Min
Salary Max
Contact Email


Position Overview

Under the direction of the Chief of Collections, the Research Collection Manager provides leadership and oversight to the Boston Public Library’s extensive research collection. The Research Collection manager creates and implements strategies related to research collection development, stewardship, storage, and access, and works with other institutions to explore collaborative collection relationships. The Research Collection Manger is responsible for oversight of the Library’s off-site storage facility at the City of Boston Archival Center.


Reports to

Chief of Collections



Professional and support staff



Scope of Responsibility

  1. Develops the BPL’s research collection strategy, including the approach to collection acquisition, retention, weeding, and access.  Works with Research Services and Collection Development to set priorities for acquisition and collection maintenance.  Develops guidelines to implement the strategy in coordination with relevant departments. 
  2. Works with the Central Library Manager to coordinate and manage the access, use, maintenance, and storage of research collections at the Central Library and off-site storage facilities.  Works with Collection Development to ensure streamlined acquisitions and maintenance procedures.
  3. Oversees the BPL operations in the City of Boston Archival Center, in coordination with Library Services and Operations & Technology divisions.  Supervises BPL staff assigned to work at the Archival Center.
  4. Works with Research Services to evaluate participation in Federal Depository Library Program and develop strategy for storage, access, and use of government documents.
  5. Investigates, explores, and oversees cooperative collection arrangements with other institutions.
  6. Collaborates with relevant departments to identify and transfer materials to and from the research collection.  In coordination with the Collections team and relevant departments, determines appropriate locations for materials.  Develops criteria and workflow for transferring collections to offsite storage.
  7. In coordination with Content Discovery and relevant departments, develops strategy and guidelines for description and discovery of research collection holdings, including cataloging and retrospective conversion projects, serials holdings in the research collection, and digitization selection workflows.
  8. Works with the Chief of Adult Library Services, relevant departments, and vendors to evaluate electronic resources and identify gaps or overlap in physical and digital content. Oversees budgets related to electronic and physical serials, in coordination with the Collection Development Manager.
  9. Collaborates with Preservation Manager and relevant departments to implement preservation program for research collections, including stacks cleaning and bindery programs. Works with the Preservation team to assist in monitoring environmental conditions and reporting issues.
  10. Represents the Library for capital and other projects related to the environmental improvements, space planning, and/or storage of collections.
  11. Builds and fosters productive partnerships with peer libraries, other non-profits, and the commercial sector.
  12. Initiates and maintains appropriate working relationships with staff within the Library and with other libraries, organizations, and agencies.
  13. Stays abreast of emerging technologies and assists in evaluating, recommending, and incorporating information technologies and best practices for continued research collection improvements.
  14. Commits to keeping current in the best practices of the profession by taking advantage of training and development activities, by reading professional literature, and by participating in professional activities.
  15. Represents library at local and national conferences as assigned.
  16. Works on public service desk as assigned.
  17. Performs other related and comparable duties as assigned.



  • Successfully demonstrated leadership experience within a library, museum or other similar cultural heritage institution, with substantial supervisory experience and fiscal responsibility.
  • Extensive experience with a wide range of research collection principles and best practices across formats and management principles and techniques.
  • Experience monitoring library environments, and contributing to preservation programs and procedures.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of current research collection strategies and standards.
  • Ability to identify, plan, and prioritize job responsibilities and tasks and determine and implement project timelines.
  • Ability to work independently and collegially with a wide range of staff and in team environments.
  • Demonstrated ability to engage staff and external constituencies in the collaborative planning, coordination, and execution of new services or programs.
  • Ability to demonstrate vision, strategic thinking, initiative, collaboration, flexibility and adaptability; and willingness to embrace change.
  • Ability to recognize and set priorities and to use initiative and independent decision-making skills.
  • Ability to work collaboratively and proactively with various advisory groups and levels of staff in a team environment.
  • Excellent interpersonal, written, and oral communication skills.
  • Demonstrated experience with project management and strong analytical skills and problem solving abilities.  
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Outlook, Word, PowerPoint, and Excel.
  • Ability to think creatively and innovatively.
  • Ability to execute library policy.

Minimum Entrance Qualifications:


Bachelor’s degree from a recognized college or university and a master’s degree in library science from an ALA accredited library school.  Relevant subject knowledge and/or specialized training required.  In exceptional instances specialized education, training, and/or experience may be substituted for a part or all of the educational requirements.


  1. Demonstrated seven years of professional experience in management of research collections required.  Management experience must be with research collections of comparable size and scale and must include strategy development and collaboration
  2. At least three years of supervisory and/or management of staff experience required.
  3. Knowledge of current developments within research collections, including collection retention and storage, required.


  1. This position will split time between the Central Library in Copley Square and the City of Boston Archival Center in West Roxbury.
  2. Residency - Must be a resident of the City of Boston upon the first day of hire.
  3. CORI - Must successfully clear a Criminal Offenders Record Information check with the City of Boston.


Union/Salary Plan/Grade: PSA/P-5

Hours per week: 35



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