Geospatial and Data Librarian

Posted to IASSIST on: 2009-04-09

Employer: University of Toronto Libraries

Employer URL:


Scholars Portal is a cooperative project of the Ontario Council of University Libraries. The goal of the project is to develop a common technological and services infrastructure to support the delivery of electronic resources to researchers and students in Ontario’s 21 universities. The Scholars Portal team of librarians and IT professionals provides services in these areas: inter-library loan (RACER), e-journals archive, database searching (Scholars Portal Search), OpenURL linking (SFX), electronic resource management (Verde ERM), statistical data (ODESI), and citation management (RefWorks). Scholars Portal is seeking to hire a Geospatial and Data Librarian to provide ongoing support and enhancement of ‘ODESI’ and to lead the implementation of a new ‘Geospatial Data Portal’. The ‘Geospatial Data Portal’ will establish a shared infrastructure and provide Ontario’s academic researchers with a powerful new set of tools for searching and analyzing the vast quantities of geo-referenced data acquired by Ontario’s academic libraries. Adding Ontario health data to the Scholars Portal infrastructure will also be a focus of the project.

RESPONSIBILITIES: The Geospatial and Data Librarian will coordinate the work of various project teams, develop effective tools for communicating the goals and progress of the project, prepare progress reports for the provincial funding authority and OCUL, supervise programmers and interns hired to develop the Geospatial Data Portal, and provide advice and guidance to Scholars Portal and OCUL on best practices and current research in the area of data management. The candidate will also be expected to work with other OCUL librarians to develop appropriate description for managing research data collections; investigate new sources of metadata; keep abreast of new and evolving metadata standards such as the Data Documentation Initiative (DDI) and projects of the Open Geospatial Consortium.

Duties will include:


  • work with the data and geospatial librarians in OCUL to provide day-to-day support for ODESI and the Geospatial Data Portal
  • supervise the work of application programmers, and of interns and student assistants hired to mark up data files for ingest into various databases

Project Management

  • work with project teams, composed of volunteers from the OCUL libraries, to define policies and procedures regarding service and performance measures
  • identify resources required to meet project goals
  • identify risks to successful implementation and develop strategies to minimize these risks identify milestones and track progress

Liaison and Communication

  • communicate with software vendors and data providers to maintain effective working relationships

Promotion and Training

  • develop promotional and training resources for use in the 20 OCUL libraries
  • give presentations on Scholars Portal data services at library meetings and academic conferences

Reporting and Budgeting

  • work with the OCUL Executive Director and the Scholars Portal Manager to identify resource requirements and track expenditures
  • prepare progress reports for provincial funding authorities and OCUL management groups prepare RFI/RFP documents as required

Applicants must be a graduate of an ALA accredited library school with an MLIS/MISt degree or an acceptable equivalent. At least one year of related experience required. Second masters and/or undergraduate degree with a preference for fields with a focus on quantitative/spatial analysis is preferred. Familiarity with database and cataloging practices and metadata schemas. Experience with XML preferred. Knowledge of public and proprietary resources for national and international numeric and geospatial data. Basic familiarity with software for statistical and geospatial analysis e.g. SAS, SPSS, Stata, GIS applications (both commercial and open source). Current knowledge of best practices in managing large datasets, including metadata coding standards, emerging technologies, and traditional and innovative uses of geospatial data. Strong organizational and project management skills. Strong communication skills.

Archived on: 2009-04-30