Metadata and Discovery Librarian

Washington, DC
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Created: November 8, 2018


The National Geographic Society Library seeks an energetic, knowledgeable and self-motivated metadata and discovery librarian to provide strategic direction and innovative leadership in metadata services for library collections. This position works collaboratively with archival metadata specialists and the systems administrator in order to optimize information organization, discovery and access.

The Metadata and Discovery Librarian is responsible for collecting, preserving, and presenting print and digital information in all formats, creating bibliographic and archival metadata for collections, books, ebooks and other items, as required. This includes managing authorities and ensuring data quality, and other duties associated with the creation and maintenance of item-­ and collection-­level data for a variety of print and digital content and materials.

This position requires a firm and broad conceptual understanding of metadata principles and archival and digital collection technologies and the ability to apply and adapt them to existing and emerging media in a variety of formats. This includes developing, documenting and revising workflows and policies, and providing collection analytics. The Librarian also will participate in the management of e-­resources and assist with the expansion of online collections and new digital initiatives. This person acts as an active partner with technology vendors, providing feedback, suggesting improvements, and keeping the needs of the clients in the forefront.

This individual also provides reference services and processes payments for print and digital monographs, serials, databases, and other acquisitions: places orders, processes renewals, and resolves complex service problems.


  • Manages library management system (Alma) and discovery tool (Primo) to optimize access to library and archive collections and e-resources. Collaborates with other library + archives units and IT on data management and system integration with archives catalog and digital preservation archive. Develops and maintains library cataloging and workflow policies, maintenance standards, and best practices for a shared ILS environment. (35%)
  • Creates original and copy cataloging for a wide range of formats, including serials, non-­print materials, and e­-resources, using current and emerging metadata schemas, principles and practices such as MARC, RDA, Library of Congress classification and Dublin Core. Provides collection analytics, and supervises contract catalogers as needed. (30%).
  • Provides expert metadata consulting services for Library, Archives, and enterprise projects. Employs emerging metadata schemas to link content across multiple data repositories, and improve search optimization and discoverability of internal and external data. (10%)
  • Processes payments for all print and digital monographs, serials, databases, office supply and other acquisitions: places orders, processes renewals, and resolves complex service problems. (15%)
  • Provides reference services and supports interlibrary loan. (10%)

Minimum Education Required

MLS/MLIS from ALA-Accredited Institution

Minimum Years and Type of Experience

7+ years cataloging/metadata experience in a library setting, showing progressive responsibility.
Ex Libris Alma Certification.

Knowledge and Skills Required

  • Comprehensive knowledge of cataloging standards and tools (including but not limited to MARC21, RDA, AACR2, OCLC, MarcEdit) and original and copy cataloging and classification in all formats
  • Demonstrated familiarity with and interest in current and emerging standards, models, applications, and initiatives such as BIBFRAME, RDF, and linked data
  • Experience administering and using Ex Libris Alma and Primo.
  • Experience with interlibrary loan services systems.
  • Effective oral, written, and interpersonal communication skills with ability to communicate complex information effectively.
  • Demonstrated analytical, organizational, planning, and project management skills.
  • Working knowledge of XML and HTML

Preferred Qualifications

  • Knowledge of metadata crosswalking and emerging metadata transfer specifications such as OAI-PMH.
  • Experience working with Ex Libris Rosetta or other digital preservation platforms.
  • Working knowledge of database systems such as MySQL or Access.
  • Experience facilitating system migrations, preferably ILS or digital archives migration.
  • Experience working with EZproxy.


Contractors, interns

Responsibility percentages may vary depending on business needs.
National Geographic's headquarters is located in the heart of Washington, D.C. In addition to a unique and dynamic work environment, National Geographic offers its employees a comprehensive benefits package, including health and dental benefits, generous vacation and leave time, a 401(k) plan, and flexible work options. National Geographic is an Equal Opportunity Employer


Published: Friday, November 9, 2018 00:56 UTC

Last updated: Friday, November 9, 2018 00:56 UTC