Exploring Library Discovery Positions: Are They Emerging or Converging?
Journal of Web Librarianship
Elleroa, Nadine P.
Copyright (c) 2014 Taylor & Francis
Abstract: Web-scale discovery service systems and platforms are continuing to evolve and become more commonly adopted in academic libraries. Functioning as more than next-generation catalogs due to their volume and associated Web services, they invite strategic inquiry and launch libraries into deeper questioning and continuous critical thinking concerning discovery system best practices. This article explores emerging library discovery positions and discovery requirements gleaned through position postings from Autocat, Code4Lib, ERIL-L, and NGC4Lib listserv e-mails, from February 2012 through July 2014, along with a 2013 scan of Association of Research Library (ARL) staff directoriesí Web sites. As seen through the lens of recent discovery position postings and names of discovery positions at ARL libraries, staffing solutions suggest strategic oversight and deep understanding of discovery systems, metadata, and users. This study of 36 discovery positions reveals directors or managers as comprising the highest number with ten (28 percent), systems with eight (22 percent), cataloging and metadata with seven (19 percent), acquisitions or electronic resources with five (14 percent), user experiences with three (8 percent), access services with two (6 percent), and general technical services with one (3 percent). These emerging discovery positions traverse both traditional technical and public services functions, with the majority, 26 (72 percent), from large research-level institutions.