Collection Development Librarian — Cornell University

Cornell University Academic Position Announcement

Collection Development Librarian

The Collection Development Team at Cornell University’s Albert R. Mann Library is seeking a Collection Development Librarian.

We are looking for someone who loves collections and understands the central role they play in the lives of faculty, students, staff and the public as an integral part of a major research institution. You’ll bring an undeterred passion for open access, negotiation and making data-informed decisions along with a desire to be part of diverse, welcoming and affirming team, collaboratively building collections in the sciences and social sciences. We’ll want you to have some collections experience and an enthusiasm for building more experience on the job.

Does this sound like you? If so, we’d really like to talk.

Mann Library serves dozens of disciplines in the life and social sciences and is also the main hub of Cornell’s science libraries. The person in this position will be a key contributing member on two discipline-based selection teams, though rest assured that at Cornell University Library we work together across departments and across campus to solve problems, learn new skills, and support each other’s work. If this position sounds interesting to you, please don’t allow fear of not having enough collection development skills get in the way of applying. We’re looking for someone with the right attitude and potential.

Required Qualifications:

What we’re looking for more specifically:

  • A demonstrated ability to apply data-informed decision making to collection development. Right at this moment, you may not have all the skills you want to have, but you’re enthusiastic about learning new ones, and you’re able to orient to the basics of new tools pretty quickly. You’re comfortable saying, “I don’t know, but let’s work on it together.” You’re a problem solver and like to dig.
  • Experience with one or more data tools or approaches that support collection development. Some possible examples:
  • Microsoft Excel
  • OpenRefine
  • SQL
  • R
  • Coursework in statistics and/or accounting
  • The exact mix of skills that you develop over time will depend on your interests and the ongoing needs of the library and its users.
  • You have experience in some form of building collections. For example, this could be in:
    • Ordering materials
    • Working with budgets
    • Stacks planning and occasional weeding
    • Negotiations with publishers and vendors to keep costs down
    • Reviewing usage statistics
    • Tracking and projecting expenses
    • Managing government documents
  • Good communication skills, especially when it comes to discussing complex ideas with various audiences, especially with faculty members. You can get a point across, and you’re also a good listener.
  • Knowledge of ways that indigenous peoples and minoritized groups have been marginalized in the social sciences, natural history collections and the sciences in general. Racism and sexism can appear not only in collections but also in the ways they are built. We want to know your ideas about building just and inclusive collections.
  • A graduate degree. It might be in Library or Information Science, or it might be in something else entirely. It needs to be completed by the time you start the position.

Diversity and Inclusion: Cornell University Library embraces diversity and seeks candidates who will contribute to a climate that supports students, faculty and staff of all identities and backgrounds. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented identities to apply.

Cornell University Library is a member of the ACRL Diversity Alliance, which unites academic libraries who are committed to increasing the hiring pipeline of qualified and talented individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups.

Benefits: Our comprehensive benefits package includes 22 vacation days, 13 paid holidays, health insurance, life insurance, university retirement contributions, childcare and adoption assistance, and child tuition reimbursement. Funding is available to support professional training and research. More information regarding Cornell’s generous benefits can be found at . The anticipated academic rank for this position will either be at the Assistant or Senior Assistant Librarian level, depending on experience. The anticipated salary range will be based on academic rank, Assistant Librarian ($52,500-55,000) or Senior Assistant Librarian ($55,500-59,000).

Relocation assistance may be provided.

Visa sponsorship is not available for this position.

The safety and well-being of applicants and our team members is of the utmost importance. Because of possible travel restrictions due to recent COVID-19 variant outbreaks, there is a chance that virtual interviews may be scheduled with qualified candidates.


How to Apply: All candidates must apply online via the Cornell Careers site. We ask that you include the following information in your application:

  1. A cover letter;
  2. A Curriculum Vitae;
  3. A Statement of “Contribution to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion,” which may be incorporated into the cover letter OR presented as a separate statement. Candidates are invited to describe past, present, and/or future aspirations for promoting equity, inclusion, and diversity in their careers as researchers and educators, and/or to convey how they see these commitments continuing at Cornell. Such articulation may focus on teaching, research, or service, or all three factors.
  4. The names, phone numbers, and addresses for three references.

Incoming applications will be reviewed until a viable pool of applicants is identified; submission prior to October 1, 2021 is strongly encouraged. Although we prefer to receive your application as one, multi- page pdf document, we will accept multiple documents in other formats.

Environment: One of the leading academic research libraries in the United States, Cornell University Library is a highly valued partner in teaching, research, and learning at the university. With an operating budget of over $58 million and a diverse and innovative staff of close to 400, the Library provides significant collaborative opportunities in support of 2,700 faculty, 24,000 students and 94 PhD fields. Its world class collections, expert librarians, and responsive services in physical and virtual library spaces inspire and nourish scholarship and learning.

The Ithaca campus sits on 2,300 acres in the heart of the Finger Lakes region. Ithaca, located roughly halfway between Manhattan and Toronto, offers a wealth of cultural activities while maintaining an eclectic college-town feel. Outdoor enthusiasts can take advantage of rolling hills, breathtaking gorges, hiking trails, and lakes offering countless outdoor activities. The city has been named one of the top 100 places to live, a top 10 recreation city, a best green place to live, and one of the “foodiest” towns in America.

Online Submission Guidelines: Most positions at Cornell will require you to apply online and submit both a resume/CV and cover letter. You can upload documents either by “dragging and dropping” them into the dropbox or by using the “upload” icon on the application page. For more detailed instructions on how to apply to a job at Cornell, visit How We Hire on the HR website.

Employment Assistance: If you require an accommodation for a disability in order to complete an employment application or to participate in the recruiting process, you are encouraged to contact Cornell University’s Department of Inclusion and Workforce Diversity at voice (607) 255-3976, fax (607) 255-7481, or email at

For general questions about the position or the application process, please contact the Recruiter listed in the job posting.

Applicants that do not have internet access are encouraged to visit your local library, or local Department of Labor. You may also visit the office of Workforce Recruitment and Retention Monday – Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. to use a dedicated workstation to complete an online application.

Notice to Applicants: Please read the required Notice to Applicants statement by clicking here. This notice contains important information about applying for a position at Cornell as well as some of your rights and responsibilities as an applicant.

EEO Statement: Diversity and Inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We are a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities. We also recognize a lawful preference in employment practices for Native Americans living on or near Indian reservations. Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students, and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose, and contribute creative ideas to further the university’s mission of teaching, discovery, and engagement.