position descriptions in alignment with institutional goals and hire the right staff. And, in turn we must develop staff education efforts to support new roles and implement appropriate performance evaluation systems. At the University of Minnesota we have been working for several years now to transform the roles of University Libraries’ and reconceive essential infrastructure to support those roles. A New Position Description Framework The liaison model is still very powerful, with librarians possessing both subject expertise and strong knowledge of the interests, activities, and priorities of local faculty and academic departments. The ability to build strong relationships is critical for most of the identified new roles and is something that good liaisons have always done well. For the last three years, we have been engaged in reinventing the liaison model. Key to our process has been the Position Description Framework, a document that serves as the foundation for all librarian position descriptions. This framework redefines traditional roles (the “holy trinity” of reference, instruction, and collection development mentioned elsewhere in this issue by Kara Whatley) and integrates the new roles that librarians increasingly find themselves occupying. A key challenge we face in this process is that it is not unusual to find ourselves occupying and defining a new role at the same time. The Library Department Directors and I used an iterative process to create the framework. We wrote an initial draft, which was distributed to liaisons. Their comments and suggestions were then incorporated into the document. The Framework has evolved to encompasses ten areas: Campus Engagement Content/Collection Development and Management Teaching and Learning Scholarly Communication E-Scholarship and Digital Tools Reference/Help Services Outreach (to the local community) RLI 265 4 A Framework for Articulating New Library Roles ( C O N T I N U E D ) AUGUST 2009 RESEARCH LIBRARY ISSUES: A BIMONTHLY REPORT FROM ARL, CNI, AND SPARC ...it is not unusual to find ourselves occupying and defining a new role at the same time.
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