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Available Positions

Monday, November 12, 2018

Digital Projects Archivist, Brooklyn Historical Soc (NY)

Digital Projects Archivist

The Digital Projects Archivist will play a significant role in the Library & Archives Department consisting of 5 full-time, 1 part-time professional, and several interns. He/she will serve on Brooklyn Historical Society committees, participate in public programs, and represent BHS and his/her digital archive perspective and expertise in professional regional and national organizations such as A.R.T., MARAC, ARLIS, and SAA. The DPA will manage existing digital assets, facilitate ingest of born-digital collections, digitize two-dimensional collection items, supervise digitization interns, and contribute to strategic planning of BHS's digital program by revising policies based on resources and opportunities, work toward improving procedures for born-digital materials, and collaborate with professional colleagues with the digital archival field. In addition, the Digital Projects Archivist will contribute to the Photo of the Week series and perform reference duties during public research hours. The DPA will report directly to the Managing Director of Library & Archives.


• Oversee staff- and researcher-requested digitization of collection items and distribute assets to internal users and external partners
• Provide day-to-day and long-range administrative oversight of digital assets
• Apply project management methodologies for digital assets and related projects. Enforce digitization and photography standards
• Item-level cataloging using Past Perfect; collection-level record enhancement using ArchivesSpace
• Research and assess copyright status for all requests
• Assist in bringing existing assets up to appropriate standards, including reorganization of file directories and metadata cleanup projects
• Work closely with staff in departments across the institution to improve access to digital assets for daily use, special projects, and initiatives
• Provide quality control for all metadata to assure accuracy and consistency across the institution
• Supervise part-time digitization staff and interns
• Research and make recommendations on emerging standards and best practices in digital asset management including DAM software, digital asset preservation, metadata, and digital rights management
• Serve on the Library reference desk during the Library’s open hours as needed, including one (1) Saturday per month
• Serve on Brooklyn Historical Society committees
• Weekly blogging and Photo of the Week participation

Required Qualifications:

• 3-5 years post-MLS processing experience.
• Masters in Library and Information Science, with a specialization with a specialization in Museum Studies, Computer Science, or Archival Management
• Experience with database management, maintaining and establishing standards and practices for digitization and metadata creation, file formatting, and data migration.
• Thorough understanding of digital still image file creation, including: image size, bit depth, color profiling, image resolution and compression.
• Strong oral and written communication skills
• Ability to work as both independently and as part of a team
• Very high level of organizational skill with keen attention to detail and the ability to advocate and implement best practices and institutional policy regarding the institution’s digital assets.
• Strong computer skills, including a complete working knowledge of Adobe Photoshop, and Adobe Bridge software.
• Excellent communication skills, including the ability to collaborate with staff at all levels across the institution and with outside organizations and vendors.
• Familiarity with MARC and EAD; AACR2 and DACS; and with the use and application of standardized vocabularies
• Supervisory experience, either within an archive or another work setting
• Ability to lift, bend, and reach boxes or volumes weighing up to 40 lbs repeatedly, including handling these materials while standing on rolling ladders and stepstools.
• Ability to work in library stacks in cold temperatures (60-65 degrees Fahrenheit) for up to an eight-hour workday, five days a week
• Demonstrated reliable attendance to ensure successful and timely project completion
• Experience manipulating datasets for access purposes
• Team player with the ability to organize information at a high level, multi-task in a fast-paced environment, and creatively solve problems

Preferred Qualifications:

• Practical experience with image cataloguing, data preservation, and electronic distribution of digital images and video for cultural heritage objects and projects.
• A thorough understanding of intellectual property law, including “fair use” and similar copyright issues.
• Undergraduate degree in history. A working knowledge of U. S. history is needed, to determine how collections fit into state and national issues for purposes of cataloging; knowledge of legal processes and terminology; and knowledge of Brooklyn or New York history is preferred.
• Experience handling and providing basic preservation treatments for historic materials.
• Experience supporting curatorial and exhibition projects.


Salary is commensurate with experience. Benefits include medical and dental insurance, paid vacation, 401k, and support for professional development. BHS staff ID grants free entrance to museums around New York City.

To Apply:

Please email a cover letter and resume to The subject line of the email should read: "[last name] – Digital Projects Archivist". Applications will be reviewed immediately. No phone calls please.

About the BHS and the Othmer Library:

BHS' Othmer Library and archives house the most comprehensive collection of Brooklyn-related materials in the world. In 1993, the U.S. Department of Education designated the Othmer Library as a “major research library” under Title II-C of the Higher Education Act. Today the collection includes more than 100,000 books and pamphlets, 60,000 photographs and prints, 2,000 feet of archival collections, and more than 2,000 maps and atlases. These materials include family histories, rare books, periodicals, serials, journals, personal papers, institutional records, and oral histories that document Brooklyn's many different ethnic groups and neighborhoods.

We draw from these holdings to create interpretive exhibitions that prompt students, scholars and members of the general public to reconsider the fundamental facts of history in light of primary source documents and artifacts. BHS serves almost 80,000 people annually by providing opportunities for civic dialogue and community engagement for children and adults through exhibit tours, public programming, research opportunities, educational programs for New York City students, and professional development workshops and written curricula for teachers. 

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