Data Curation and Digital Preservation Specialist

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Created: May 24, 2012


Simon Fraser University Library is seeking a highly flexible, collaborative and innovative individual, committed to providing the best possible service to faculty and students, to undertake a range of project-based and operational activities that will advance the SFU Library’s strategic objectives in a number of related areas: data curation and management, digital preservation, and research data services.


Simon Fraser University (SFU) is a comprehensive university with approximately 22,000 undergraduate students, 5000 graduate students, 950 faculty and 1500 staff. Ranked by respected national surveys as one of Canada’s top three comprehensive universities for the past 20 years, Simon Fraser University has also been named one of British Columbia’s top 40 Employers for 2011, as well as one of Canada’s top 100 employers. SFU offers more than 100 undergraduate major and joint major programs and more than 45 graduate offerings, spanning many disciplines in eight faculties, and has an international reputation for its innovative interdisciplinary and professional programs. The University was established in 1965 in Burnaby and has since expanded to Vancouver and Surrey.  SFU is integrally involved in the life of all three of its campus communities, including participation in a range of urban renewal and development initiatives. Further information about SFU is available at

The SFU Library has an international reputation as a technologically innovative site which is best exemplified by its role as the home for several major open source software projects – the Public Knowledge Project (PKP) and reSearcher.  PKP develops and supports a range of scholarly communications software applications including Open Journal Systems (OJS) which, as of March 2012, has been installed at over 12,800 sites around the world. reSearcher is a suite of library software modules including Godot, a link resolver, and CUFTS, an electronic resource management system and knowledgebase.  The library also has an active digitization program and has been the recipient of several grants to undertake some large digitization projects.   The library maintains most of the technical infrastructure required for these initiatives and has assembled a very skilled team of systems and technical specialists.

Within the SFU Library, planning and project-based initiatives often cross divisional and campus boundaries.  The Library Planning Committee (Dean, AULs, Division Heads) is responsible for advising the Dean on budget, personnel and external matters. The Library Council (Dean, AULs, Division/Unit Heads, seven library staff representatives) advises on other matters. There are few standing committees, with cross-divisional task groups typically planning and guiding specific projects. Further information about the Library is available at:


Reporting jointly to the Head, Library Systems for operational duties and a Project Management Team for project-related assignments, this is a unique opportunity that combines a major research data project funded by the University Priority Fund (UPF) with the implementation of several key objectives for digital preservation and research data services in the Library’s Strategic Plan for 2011-2016.  The Data Curation and Digital Preservation Specialist will play an important support role on the UPF-funded Data Curation project while also working closely with several senior Library staff to plan and implement the Library’s vision for expanded services and support for digital preservation and research data services.

The Data Curation and Digital Preservation Specialist will be based in Library Systems with close working relationships with Research Data Services , Research Commons, the Library’s Liaison Librarians, and the Library’s Institutional Repository staff.  The Library expects to engage external consulting services to assist with planning and implementation of the Data Curation project and this position will also work closely with them.   The Data Curation and Digital Preservation Specialist will collaborate with staff from both inside and outside the library; and interact with faculty, students, and various academic and administration units throughout the university.  This is an opportunity for a recent graduate of a library/information science or archival studies program, or other practitioners, who are interested in gaining extensive and invaluable experience in emerging research data and digitization areas. 

This is a two-year, internal grant funded position, with the possibility of extension beyond the 2 year term subject to funding availability.


UPF Research Data Project
  • Under the direction of the Project Management Team, provide general support for all aspects of the project.
  • Work with relevant library units and relevant university units (e.g. IT  Services, Westgrid, the Office of VP Research, other research centers) to assist in the  development of university-wide policies, procedures, and support for research data production, management , curation; and discovery for primary and secondary analysis
Research Data Curation and Management
  • Work closely with colleagues in the Library and across campus and provide support  to ensure SFU compliance with data curation mandates as well as promoting open access to SFU produced research data
  • Provide support  to promote data curation and management services amongst faculty and students and staff, and to solicit feedback from researchers about data management needs
  • Assist faculty/students/staff with writing data management plans to include in grant applications
  • Identify appropriate venues for data storage and access and act as intermediary between researchers and appropriate internal and/or external repositories and archives
  • Assist with development of mechanisms for searching and accessing data collections
  • Work with relevant library units to develop procedures and best practices for helping researchers with database creation and metadata creation
  • Collaborate with other Library departments on library-wide developments of new initiatives and reviews of existing services
Digital Preservation
  • Assist in the planning and implementation of the Library's digital preservation services
  • Work closely with other units on campus on digital preservation initiatives, such as the SFU Archives and IT
Services Research Data Services

The Research Data Services Librarian manages, delivers, and develops library services related to the management, discovery and use of data sets primarily but not limited to the social sciences.  Responsibilities include:
  • Assist in the delivery of research data services to faculty and students
  • Provide support for qualitative data analysis tools and collaborate with other data services
  • Provide data support through programs and services offered through the Research Commons
  • Assist in developing the numeric data collection and the numeric data collection budget
  • Assist in provision of data and support for research initiatives within the social sciences research community
  • Assist in provision of tools for discovery and use of data by researches and students
  • Provide instruction and assistance to students and faculty in the use of information sources through seminars, guides, and individual consultations
  • In collaboration with liaison librarians and others contributes to the development of library-related resources and services

  • Graduate degree in library/information science/archival studies from an ALA accredited program or equivalent
  • Relevant course work, project or work experience in at least two of the following areas: data curation, digital preservation, research data services, project management
  • Demonstrated knowledge of intellectual property issues, related academic/research policies and procedures related to data curation and management such as preservation, retrieval, and managing access to sensitive data
  • Demonstrated knowledge of research infrastructure, tools (e.g. DSpace, Fedora, or other repository software), standards and facilities for preservation, data formats and migration, discovery and access
  • Demonstrated skill in planning and delivering instruction
  • Knowledge of relevant metadata standards (e.g. DC, DDI, FGDC, ISO, SMDX)
  • Excellent communication skills, both oral and written
  • Superior interpersonal and intercultural skills
  • Familiarity with current trends in post-secondary education and academic library services
  • Second advanced degree with a research component
  • Familiarity with research data analysis tools (statistics, data mining)
  • Familiarity with major data resources from government and other agencies
  • Familiarity with domain specific metadata standards
This appointment is a term position (with the possibility of extension) and will be made at the Librarian I rank, commensurate with experience, and in accordance with SFU Policy AD 12.03. The applicable SFU Librarian Salary Scale can be viewed at:

A summary of benefits for Librarians is available at:   and

Simon Fraser University is committed to the principle of equity in employment and offers equal employment opportunities to qualified applicants.  All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

Under the authority of the University Act, personal information that is required by the University for academic appointment competitions will be collected.  For further details, see:


Applications are to be submitted by e-mail in one consolidated PDF file, and will include: a letter of application, indicating the candidate’s education, training, and work experience in the areas listed above;  a current curriculum vitae; and the names of three referees with their contact information by 9:00am PST on Thursday, June 7, 2012 to:
Catherine Louie
Library Management Office
W.A.C. Bennett Library
Simon Fraser University
8888 University Drive
Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6

Phone: 778-782-6704
Fax: 778-782-3023

Last updated: Tuesday, February 28, 2017 23:47 UTC