Associate University Librarian for Digital Strategy and Services

Chicago, IL, USA
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Created: January 30, 2023


The Associate University Librarian (AUL) for Digital Strategy and Services provides vision, leadership, and coordination for the digital services of the University of Chicago Library system. Through a forward-looking approach to digital services, the AUL positions the Library as an enabler of excellence and innovation in research and learning. As a member of the Library’s Strategic Leadership Board, the AUL shapes Library-wide strategic planning and works in partnership with all Library divisions to create an inclusive culture of digital innovation. They sustain and grow partnerships across campus and (inter)nationally, to position the Library as a critical node in the local and global knowledge system, at the forefront of digital scholarship and open research.

Reporting to the Dean of the University Library, the AUL has oversight of the Center for Digital Scholarship, the Digital Library Development Center, the Dissertation Office, the Integrated Library Systems and Administrative & Desktop Systems teams (25 employees, 4 direct reports). The AUL provides leadership for the Library’s IT services, including the design, development, and maintenance of a robust, integrated, secure library infrastructure as part of the University’s digital ecosystem. The portfolio includes the open-source library management (FOLIO) and discovery (VuFind) systems, Knowledge@UChicago, the Invenio-based repository and research data management platform, and the digital preservation service.

The division enables Library operations through responsive user support services, desktop and server administration, and strategic investment in technologies that enable technical and access services operations. The division works across the University and with external partners (including the Big Ten Academic Alliance, IvyPlus Libraries Confederation and others) to build and sustain innovative, open, and accessible library services. In partnership with other Library staff, it offers outreach services on the use of digital methodologies in teaching and research, development of digital collections, scholarly communications, data management planning, and digital archiving – with the aim to establish the Library not just as a service provider but as a partner in the research process of faculty and students. The division acts as a hub and incubator for digital innovation and has a coordinating role for Library digital scholarship activities and the development of related projects and grant proposals.

The division has made deep investments in open source and community-developed initiatives, including the FOLIO project, and Platform for Open Data (POD). It has a long history of collaboration with campus partners to support locally-developed systems that enable data modeling, analysis, and publication such as the Humanities Division’s OCHRE and ARTFL platforms. As a next stage in the development of these services, the Library is collaborating with faculty to build an integrated environment that will for the first time bring together all digital library collections with faculty research tools, with the longer-term aim to build a digital collections and content platform for the University. We are looking for a collaborative leader to build on these strengths and ambitions.


  • Engages across the Library, University, and the global research community to ensure the Library is well informed of trends and opportunities in digital information services.
  • Works closely with the Dean of the Library to develop a strategic approach to digital services that meets the needs of the University, and leads on its implementation.
  • As a member of the Strategic Leadership Board, develops and implements Library priorities, and contributes to strategic planning, resource management, and policies.
  • Oversees the Library’s IT services and digital infrastructure, including the library management system, discovery system, website, and digital preservation system.
  • Acts as the senior representative of the Library with regards to digital services across the campus, sustaining existing and building new partnerships with faculty and other units.
  • Interacts with faculty, staff, students, and community members to understand their needs and develop policies and programs that enable an exceptional user experience.
  • Ensures responsive and accessible environments for digital scholarship within Library facilities that recognizes the diverse needs of multiple constituencies.
  • Identifies opportunities for digital service enhancements and/or development, to meet the needs of faculty and students. Transforms this understanding into program and project development, including taking a lead role in developing grant proposals.
  • Provides leadership for program development, collaborates to enable cross-divisional initiatives, and coordinates digital activities across the Library.
  • Strategically engages in campus-wide initiatives, consortial partnerships, and regional, national, and international organizations and fosters new partnerships.
  • Work with appropriate campus committees, units, faculty, and administrators to develop collaborations that advance IT infrastructure and digital scholarship.
  • Collaborates with campus IT to understand and implement policies, security frameworks, and network strategies.
  • Provides strategic leadership for the teams in the division.
  • Inspires and maintains a focused, collaborative, and highly knowledgeable workforce, and nurtures a culture of innovation, evidence-based investments, and responsive program development.
  • Leads divisional planning, resource allocation, and assessment, ensuring that division goals advance the Library’s overall strategic plan.
  • Contributes to fundraising initiatives and events.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.



  • Master of Library Science degree from an ALA-accredited institution (or combination of a university degree and equivalent experience).
  • Minimum of five years of proven leadership in managing teams, budgets, and/or projects at a library or information service provider.
  • Understanding of the research lifecycle, especially as it relates to digital research methods and the creation, dissemination, and preservation of digital research outputs.
  • Proven expertise in at least two of: library management systems; discovery services; IT user support and system administration; digital collections; digital preservation; research data; repository services; open access/open research; persistent identifiers and research information management.
  • Experience with overseeing technical projects, services, and teams, ideally with regards to library systems and/or digital scholarship activities.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively across units as well as with faculty, technical staff, vendors, and stakeholders at all levels, to build impactful partnerships by utilizing excellent interpersonal, written, and oral communication skills.
  • Record of grant application and management.
  • Record of engaging in debates on digital information services and/or digital scholarship, e.g., through conferences, publications, and participation in community activities.
  • Broad understanding of the role and potential of information technology in libraries.


  • Ability to identify opportunities for (library) service development, make a case for investment, plan and deliver projects, and turn them into sustainable services.
  • Creative and resourceful with strong problem-solving skills and willing to seek out, coordinate, and appropriately disseminate information to key stakeholders.
  • Work in a fast-paced, deadline-driven, highly collaborative environment and a demonstrated experience working with and through internal and external partners.

Application Instructions

To Apply: Submit cover letter, curriculum vitae, and reference contact information online through the University of Chicago's Academic Recruiting website Review of applications will begin after February 25, 2023. Screening of applications will continue until the position is filled or the search is closed.

Salary and Benefits: Appointment salary based on qualifications and experience. Benefits include retirement plan, insurance, and paid time off.

Questions: Contact Library Human Resources,

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

All University departments and institutes are charged with building a faculty from a diversity of backgrounds and with diverse viewpoints; with cultivating an inclusive community that values freedom of expression; and with welcoming and supporting all their members.

We seek a diverse pool of applicants who wish to join an academic community that places the highest value on rigorous inquiry and encourages diverse perspectives, experiences, groups of individuals, and ideas to inform and stimulate intellectual challenge, engagement, and exchange. The University’s Statements on Diversity are at

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information please see the University's Notice of Nondiscrimination.

Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773-834-3988 or email with their request.


Published: Wednesday, February 1, 2023 21:33 UTC

Last updated: Wednesday, February 1, 2023 21:33 UTC