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Harvard University Library Professional in Cambridge, Massachusetts

63627BRAuto req ID:63627BRJob Code:386056 Library Professional Department Office Location:USA - MA - Cambridge Business Title:Reference LibrarianSub-Unit:------------ Salary Grade ( :056Time Status:Full-time Union:00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary Basic Qualifications:

  • MLIS from an ALA accredited graduate program.  

  • 2 years of professional reference or research services experience in a special collections or archives.

    Included in the two years of experience noted in the basic qualifications section is:

  • Strong user-services orientation

  • Ability to communicate well with faculty, staff, and users at all levels and from diverse backgrounds.

Additional Qualifications and Skills:

  • Evidence of excellent communication, public speaking, writing and analytical skills.

  • Knowledge of the history and use of photographic, moving image, and sound recording processes, formats, and digitization.

  • Understanding of intellectual property rights, copyright, and rights management.

  • Experience in library instruction, particularly involving special collections materials. 

  • Strong technology skills and an enthusiasm for adopting new technologies and systems that expand access to collections and facilitate their use in research and teaching. 

  • Capacity to thrive as a highly collaborative team member in a future-focused environment.

Additional Information: Cover Letter:

Please note that cover letters are required for every application for a position at the Harvard Radcliffe Institute. Please combine your cover letter and resume into a single document that is uploaded when you are instructed by HARVARD CAREERS, Harvard’s online application program, to “Upload my resume/CV from my computer”.

Complete applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled. However, we encourage all interested candidates to apply before September 30, 2023.


We will be conducting interviews virtually and might invite finalist candidates for on-campus interviews. We appreciate your understanding and flexibility with our interview process.

Flex Work Note:

This role is offered as a primarily on-campus position where the incumbent will be required to be onsite at our Cambridge, MA-based campus regularly. There may be occasional opportunity to work remotely. Specific schedule will be determined between the incumbent and manager.

About the Harvard Radcliffe Institute:

The Harvard Radcliffe Institute ( is dedicated to creating and sharing transformative ideas across the arts, humanities, sciences, and social sciences. The Fellowship Program ( annually supports the work of 50 leading artists and scholars. Academic Ventures and Engagement ( fosters collaborative research projects and sponsors lectures and conferences that engage scholars with the public. The Schlesinger Library ( documents the lives of American women of the past and present for the future, furthering the Institute’s commitment to women, gender and society.

We are proud to be an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer and are committed to achieving our goals through the efforts of a highly skilled, diverse workforce. With outstanding benefits ( , competitive pay ( , extensive learning opportunities ( , and a stimulating and attractive work environment, the Harvard Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University may be exactly the employer you have been looking for.

Department:Schlesinger LibraryPre-Employment Screening:Education, Employment, IdentityJob Function:Library Position Description:

  • Participates in the full range of in-person and virtual reference services, including regular reference desk shifts .

  • Assists researchers in locating and accessing images and audiovisual material.

  • Responds to researcher and internal requests for image and A/V reproductions and answers queries related to the use of the Library’s visual materials in publications, films, websites, and exhibitions, etc.

  • Manages image and A/V reproduction workflows. Provides basic copyright education and keep current with trends in image use and related policies.

  • Develops in-depth knowledge of the library’s collections and works to gain subject knowledge in women’s history, gender studies, and culinary history.

  • Participates in Library outreach efforts, including instruction, tours, exhibits and social media.

  • Contributes to the development of e-learning tools and creates instructional content for a various of contexts, including LibGuides, the library’s webpage and social media.

  • Engages in departmental planning efforts and contributes to the improvement of library services, programs, and methodology, particularly in the area of image and reproduction policies and procedures.

  • Performs other duties and executes library projects, as assigned.

    Supervisory Responsibilities:

    Responsibilities may include hiring and training, planning, and assigning work for temporary staff and student assistants.

    School/Unit:Harvard Radcliffe Institute EEO Statement:We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.Physical Requirements:

  • Employee must have the ability to sit at a desk for a minimum of seven hours a day and complete tasks requiring repetitive use of hands.

  • Standing, sitting, talking, hearing, focusing for considerable lengths of time is required.

  • This position requires frequent lifting, pushing, and pulling of boxes up to 50 lbs and requires bending, squatting, stretching, and climbing tall ladder when needed to retrieve materials and reshelve them.

Working Conditions:

  • Located in a library office setting, there may be limited exposure to dust and mold.

  • The work schedule for this position may include occasional work beyond the official business schedule (Monday to Friday, 9:00 AM to 5:00PM) including work on Saturdays and on inclement weather days .

  • Travel between campus buildings (Radcliffe and Harvard) will be required.

Job Summary: Reporting to the Head of Research Services and in close collaboration with the Research Services team, the Reference Librarian supports the research, teaching, and learning initiatives of the Schlesinger Library and takes the lead role in promoting access and use of the Library’s visual and audiovisual materials.

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging: At the Harvard Library, our work is enriched by our diverse campus community. Our unique and wide-ranging abilities, experiences, and perspectives are integral to achieving Harvard University’s mission of excellence in research, teaching, and learning for our patrons, our collections, and our workplace. We believe that an inclusive environment that cultivates and promotes understanding, respect, and collaboration across our diverse workforce enables our success.

We encourage individuals with diverse backgrounds, experiences, and abilities to apply to be a part of our community of over 700 staff members.  Our work with faculty, students, and researchers to explore answers to intellectual questions, enduring and new, and to seek solutions to the world’s most consequential problems, requires that we not only reflect, but also champion our diverse society.

A global leader, the Harvard Library is a pre-eminent research library that acquires, disseminates, and preserves knowledge. Harvard's Library holdings range from traditional print collections to rapidly expanding inventories of digital resources. It is the work of the Harvard Library to provide the University's faculty, students, and researchers—now and in the future—with comprehensive access over time to all of these materials.

Benefits:We invite you to visit Harvard’s Total Rewards website ( to learn more about our outstanding benefits package, which may include:

  • Paid Time Off: 3-4 weeks of accrued vacation time per year (3 weeks for support staff and 4 weeks for administrative/professional staff), 12 accrued sick days per year, 12.5 holidays plus a Winter Recess in December/January, 3 personal days per year (prorated based on date of hire), and up to 12 weeks of paid leave for new parents who are primary care givers.

  • Health and Welfare: Comprehensive medical, dental, and vision benefits, disability and life insurance programs, along with voluntary benefits. Most coverage begins as of your start date.

  • Work/Life and Wellness: Child and elder/adult care resources including on campus childcare centers, Employee Assistance Program, and wellness programs related to stress management, nutrition, meditation, and more.

  • Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with contributions from 5% to 15% of eligible compensation, based on age and earnings with full vesting after 3 years of service.

  • Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive program including $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and reduced tuition through other participating Harvard graduate schools.

  • Tuition Reimbursement: Program that provides 75% to 90% reimbursement up to $5,250 per calendar year for eligible courses taken at other accredited institutions.

  • Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including through the Harvard Center for Workplace Development and LinkedIn Learning.

  • Commuting and Transportation: Various commuter options handled through the Parking Office, including discounted parking, half-priced public transportation passes and pre-tax transit passes, biking benefits, and more.

  • Harvard Facilities Access, Discounts and Perks: Access to Harvard athletic and fitness facilities, libraries, campus events, credit union, and more, as well as discounts to various types of services (legal, financial, etc.) and cultural and leisure activities throughout metro-Boston.

Work Format:On-Site