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Digital Programs Librarian, Boston Athenaeum, (Boston, MA)

Reporting to the N.E.H. Chief Technical Services Librarian, the Digital Programs Librarian plays
a critical role in preserving, providing access to and promoting the Boston Athenæum’s
collections by overseeing all facets of image production, including the post-capture processing of
digital surrogates; ingestion into the Athenaeum’s digital asset management system (DAM),
CONTENTdm; and adding appropriate metadata. The position also maintains the integrity of
the Athenaeum’s DAM; adheres to file naming protocols; and maintains the organization of the
digital surrogate drives and files. Additionally, the position is responsible for fulfilling rights and
reproduction requests for images for internal and external patrons.


  • Work the Chief Technical Services Librarian, Curators, Library, and Conservation staff in identifying collection material for digitization
  • Responsible for safely gathering materials selected for digitization; ensuring their security while in the imaging lab; and safely re-shelving items, after digitization in a timely fashion
  • Work with the Chief Technical Services Librarian to coordinate workflows, prioritizing projects, setting method of digitizations, determining timetables and accessing available metadata
  • Consult with Conservation when necessary to assess the suitability of materials for digitization
  • Operate digital imaging equipment to produce high-resolution images, making post-capture decisions as to composition, cropping, color correction, and alignment in accordance with digitization best practices
  • Perform post-capture production of digital surrogates and ingest them into the Library’s digital asset management system CONTENTdm
  • Ensure the integrity of CONTENTdm by maintaining the directory access searches
  • Digitizes collection material to fulfill specialized internal, departmental projects (e.g. exhibitions, promotional material, social media, lectures, etc.)
  • Ingest digital surrogates and accompanying, quality metadata into external platforms such as the Internet Archive and Digital Commonwealth
  • Create documentation for new departmental procedures and keep existing documentation up-to-date
  • Fulfills requests for rights and reproduction of images of items from the Athenæum collections
  • Serve as a supervisor in the Special Collections Reading Room once a week
  • Work with the Athenaeum archivist in developing policies related to institutional electronic records
  • Train, supervise, and monitor Technical Services interns when necessary
  • Keep up with current industry standards, best practices, and policies in digitization
  • Give tours of the Imaging Studio, as needed


  • Master of Library and Information Science degree from an ALA-accredited institution or equivalent training and experience required
  • At least three years of professional experience in the production and management of digital surrogates of cultural heritage materials required
  • Knowledge of CONTENTdm digital asset management system required
  • Demonstrated ability in operating and maintaining a range of capture and imaging technology, camera, scanner hardware, and lighting techniques required
  • Knowledge of digital image editing software such as Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, and Bridge required
  • Knowledge of metadata practices and standards such as Dublin Core required
  • Knowledge of current trends and best practices in digitization (e.g. FADGI, IIIF) required
  • Experience handling rare and fragile art objects and paper-based materials, required
  • Ability to carry out detailed procedures with accuracy under minimal supervision; to plan and prioritize job responsibilities and tasks required
  • Effective organizational and communication skills, including the ability to present complex concepts and ideas clearly in written or oral form required
  • Capacity to work collegially with other staff members and to interact respectfully with patrons required
  • Commitment to fostering a workplace culture of diversity and inclusion required
  • Experience ingesting digital surrogates into external platforms such as Internet Archive and Digital Commonwealth preferred
  • Coding capabilities preferred
  • Supervisory experience preferred
  • Knowledge of rights management and copyright issues related to digital surrogates preferred

Research shows that women and people from underrepresented groups often apply to jobs only if they meet 100% of the qualifications. We recognize that it is highly unlikely that someone meets 100% of the qualifications for a role. If much of this job description describes you, then please apply for this role.

Salary: $55,000-$59,000/year


Please submit a cover letter and resume using the following link:

The Boston Athenæum is an equal opportunity employer. We encourage individuals of diverse
backgrounds to apply and are committed to hiring individuals who value a diverse and
inclusive work environment. The Boston Athenæum is also committed to providing access,
equal opportunity, and reasonable accommodation for individuals with disabilities in
employment. To request a reasonable accommodation, please contact HRNora Conley
Generalist at 617-720-7630

Founded in 1807, the Boston Athenæum is located at 10½ Beacon Street on Beacon Hill. A
distinguished membership library and cultural institution with a long history at the center of
intellectual life in Boston, the Athenæum hosts events year round and supports a dynamic
exhibition program. It is welcoming to all, a place that nurtures a sense of wonder and delight in
sharing the joy of physical books, maps, prints, and other works of art, and a place that fosters
community and civil discourse as members and visitors connect and converse.
The Athenæum’s collections are housed within a National Historic Landmark that is widely
regarded as one of the most beautiful libraries in the world. The reading rooms—including the
barrel-vaulted fifth floor—have served as a haven and inspiration to countless writers and
researchers. The library maintains over 600,000 volumes with strengths in history, biography,
and literature, as well as fine and decorative arts. Notable holdings include primary materials on
the American Civil War; the largest portion of President George Washington’s library; a first
edition of Audubon’s The Birds of America; a 1799 set of Goya’s Los caprichos; one of the most
extensive collections of contemporary artists’ books in the United States; and numerous
artworks, including portraits of notable Americans such as Hannah Adams, John Marshall, and
Alexander Hamilton, and by artists such as Gilbert Stuart, John Singer Sargent, Allan Rohan
Crite, and Polly Thayer Starr. Membership is open to all, and visitors are warmly welcomed