Director of Resource Description / Head of cataloging & metadata

Washington, DC
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Created: January 28, 2020


The George Washington University Libraries & Academic Innovation (GWLAI) seeks a Director of Resource Description (head of cataloging and metadata) to provide leadership within the Content Management group.


Primary job responsibilities

  • Lead organizational change by partnering with peer managers of Monograph, Serials and Electronic Resources Acquisitions to develop and provide strategic direction for the evolution of services within the technical services portfolio.  

  • Enable Content Management staff to contribute to teams inside GWLAI and across the Washington Research Library Consortium (WRLC), which maintains a cooperative implementation of Alma & PrimoVE.  

  • Enhance discoverability of collections, including institutional repositories, special collections, and general collection. 

  • Foster innovative approaches utilizing helper applications (e.g. MarcEdit) and scripting languages (e.g. Python, XSLT, etc.) to conduct metadata analysis and to maintain quality metadata in a shared Alma environment. 

  • Monitor changes and developments in national and international metadata standards and practices (e.g. BIBFRAME, Linked Open Data, and RDA). Communicate and train staff in new developments.

  • Guide Resource Description staff in efforts to assess, apply, and implement appropriate standards (e.g. RDA, DublinCore, EAD, etc.) for a variety of formats to support ongoing and developing institution projects.

  • Communicate technical concepts effectively and inclusively to all, regardless of professional expertise of the audience.

  • Manage and lead Resource Description's participation in national cooperative cataloging programs such as NACO, SACO, and BIBCO

  • Directly supervise a team of four with occasional additional project staff.

  • Contribute to the broader professional community by sharing knowledge in scholarly/professional venues and through service to the University and the profession


Preferred qualifications

Managerial experience


This position reports to an Associate Dean.

When applying for the Director of Resource Description please highlight the experiences you have, including non-English language skills, that address the job responsibilities and demonstrate your ability to thrive in this position and within the broader GWLAI and university communities.


The Director of Resource Description position is part of an open recruiting call for multiple professional librarian/archivist positions. Please read the Multiple Librarian Positions posting ( to understand the varied, collaborative, and dynamic responsibilities undertaken by GWLAI librarians, the community we are building within GWLAI and across the campus, and the basic job qualifications for all positions.


The University and department have a strong commitment to achieving diversity among librarians and staff. We are particularly interested in receiving applications from members of underrepresented groups and strongly encourage women and persons of color to apply for these positions. 


Application procedure

To be considered, please complete an online application ( and upload a CV and a cover letter that includes an assessment of skills related to basic and preferred qualifications. As part of your cover letter, please indicate for which position or positions you would like to be considered. Review of applications will begin on December 16, 2019 and will continue until the positions are filled. Only complete applications will be considered. Employment offers are contingent upon the satisfactory outcome of a reference check and standard background screening.

Last updated: Tuesday, January 28, 2020 21:27 UTC