Research Data Specialist

Posted to IASSIST on: 2008-01-28

Employer: Cornell University Libraries

Employer URL:


Cornell University Libraries (CUL) seeks an energetic and productive staff member to join the Metadata Services Department <>. Under the supervision of the Head of Metadata Services, the Research Data Specialist will play a key role in shaping Cornell University Library’s involvement in e-science, digital data curation, and supporting cyberscholarship for all disciplines. He or she will have the aptitude to stay abreast of scientific research trends, data documentation tools, and standards important for data exchange, reuse, and interoperability. Utilizing and applying various information technology tools for metadata manipulation and script execution is a key responsibility for this position. The Research Data Specialist will work at the intersection of digital data, technology, and metadata for the libraries. He or she will be responsible for consultation, assessment, and support services to facilitate all aspects of digital data curation. To be successful, close collaboration will be essential in working with library staff devoted to digital libraries, information technologies, public services, as well as the data working group and constituents of the Cornell life sciences initiative. The successful candidate will perform outreach and facilitate communication between the Libraries and research groups on all Cornell campuses.

Background: Cornell University is an Ivy League comprehensive research university located in Ithaca in the scenic Finger Lakes region of upstate New York. The town and university offer a unique cosmopolitan and international atmosphere in a beautiful natural setting of waterfalls, gorges, and lakes. The university comprises 14 schools with 2600 faculty members and 20,000 students enrolled in undergraduate, graduate and professional schools. The Cornell University Library is a vigorous professional organization of 468 staff with a strong track record in innovation and service quality. It consists of 20 libraries, including a nearby high-density storage facility with a capacity of 6.8 million volumes. It contains nearly 8 million printed volumes, 62,000 current serials, 378,000 networked electronic resources, and rich materials in other formats. Ranking 9th among 113 North American academic library members of the Association of Research Libraries, the Library was a recipient of the Association of College and Research Libraries’ Excellence in Academic Libraries Award in 2002.

Benefits: Comprehensive benefits package including 22 vacation days, 11 paid holidays, health insurance, life insurance, and university retirement contributions (TIAA-CREF and other options). Professional travel funding available.

Required Qualifications: MLS or Masters degree in science. One year of research laboratory experience. Ability to work well in a collaborative team-based environment. Strong communication (oral and writing), interpersonal, and presentation skills. Aptitude for and consistency in detailed work. Ability to analyze and to solve problems creatively and flexibly in a complex and rapidly changing environment. Strong service orientation and interest in information users’ values and needs. Self-motivated and ability to multi-task. Expect to hire at the rank of Assistant Librarian or Sr. Assistant Librarian. Assistant Librarian rank is entry level for academic librarians with less than 5 years of professional experience.

Desired Qualifications: Knowledge of computational tools and techniques for data management and manipulation. Aptitude for learning digital collection management, electronic resource management, and metadata standards and formats. Familiarity with at least one of the following metadata standards: Ecological Metadata Language (EML), Data Documentation Initiative (DDI), and FGDC Biological Data Profile. Familiarity with commonly used repository platforms (e.g. Fedora, DSpace, ePrints). Ability to use various tools for metadata manipulation and scripting. Experience with relational database design, XML/XSLT, Java, Perl, Python, or PHP. Familiarity with Semantic Web specifications and experience in XML DTD and W3C schema creation. Ability to write and obtain grants and to manage grant-funded projects. Prior work experience in an academic or special library.

Archived on: 2008-02-29