A dynamic organization devoted to library services for the East Asian studies communities in North America since 1958.

UBC Library – Chinese Rare Books Cataloger Librarian

Chinese Rare Books Cataloguer Librarian
Technical Services, UBC Library | Vancouver Campus
Full-Time, One Year Term 
Anticipated Start Date: April 1, 2018


The University of British Columbia Library is one of the largest academic libraries in Canada and consistently ranks among the top university research libraries in North America. UBC Library has 14 branches and divisions, two campuses (Vancouver and Kelowna), one off-site hospital library, and the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre – a multi-purpose teaching and learning facility. The Library’s collection of over 7M items includes 1.4M ebooks, 229,020 electronic journals, 850,000 maps, audio, DVD/video and graphic materials, and 1,703 bibliographic and fulltext databases. More than 300 knowledgeable employees – librarians, management and professional staff, support staff and student staff – provide users with the excellent resources and services that they need to further their research, teaching and learning.  The UBC Library Strategic Plan 2015-2017 can be viewed at http://about.library.ubc.ca/strategic-plan/ To learn more about working with UBC Library and to explore our aspirational values visit http://about.library.ubc.ca/work-with-us/why-work-with-us/.


The Puban Collection, formerly owned by Yao Junshi of Macao and acquired by UBC in 1959 with funds from the Friends of the Library and Dr. Walter Koerner, contains some 3,200 Chinese titles in about 45,000 volumes in thread-stitched binding, the majority of which came from the well-known Nanzhou Studio of Guangdong Province. With numerous rare editions in many subject fields such as history, literature, philology and philosophy, it is one of the most distinguished Chinese collections in North America.


The Chinese Rare Books Cataloguer Librarian will work exclusively with the Puban Collection in Rare Books and Special Collection at UBC Library for a one (1) year term.  The key area of focus will be to provide bibliographic control for selected materials from the Puban Collection and identified for subsequent digitization. This will include creating full-level bibliographic records in national databases according to cataloguing standards developed for rare materials; enriches data in existing bibliographic records; and performs or supervises complex holdings and item maintenance. This position will select items of highest priority for description and digitization, and identify items in greatest need of conservation or preservation.  May also contribute to reference and instruction related to Chinese rare books, particularly the Puban Collection.  May assist Library Development with donor relationships regarding the Chinese rare Collections.



  • A graduate degree from an accredited school of Library, Archival and Information Science.
  • Native or near-native fluency in Chinese (including knowledge of traditional & simplified characters). Fluency in written and spoken English.
  •  Thorough knowledge of the Pinyin and Wade-Giles systems of Chinese romanization.
  • Working knowledge of or study of classical Chinese.
  • In-depth knowledge of AACR2R, RDA, Cataloguing Guidelines for Creating Chinese Rare Book Records in Machine-Readable Form and other relevant rare book cataloguing standards.
  • Demonstrated experience carrying out original cataloguing and authority work on Chinese materials using online bibliographic systems (preferably OCLC Connexion and ExLibris Voyager).
  • Familiarity with LCSH, Siku thesaurus, LC-PCC & CONSER cataloguing guidelines and policy statements.
  • Experience with Chinese rare book authentication to distinguish the correct edition from later or forged editions, reprints and commentaries.Demonstrated experience maintaining and developing donor relations with individuals, organizations, and community groups.
  •  Strong computer skills, including word-processing for English and Chinese, as well as knowledge of bibliographic databases.
  • Good organizational and project management skills.
  • Ability to recognize, respect and work effectively with individuals and groups with diverse perspectives and backgrounds.  Takes initiative in learning about language and issues relating to equity and diversity.
  • Ability to develop and maintain cooperative and productive working relationships and engage in workplace culture.Committed to demonstrating respect to colleagues at every level by trusting in their abilities and knowledge to perform their roles and earning
    respect through meeting commitments.
  • Models and demonstrates good communication through active listening and appreciative inquiry and open to providing and receiving timely, constructive feedback.
  • Listens to, encourages and expresses creative and innovative ideas. Open to experimenting and improvising new ways of approaching processes, tasks or problems.


  • Familiarity and experience with rare book digitization projects.
  • Experience in an academic library setting, including working with faculty and students, providing instruction, and promoting collections.
  • Substantial knowledge of Chinese literature, history and culture.


Reports directly to the Head, Technical Services. Works closely, and may receive direction from, the Head, Rare Books & Special Collections and the Head, Asian Library. Works closely with the Chinese Language Librarian (Asian Library), the Principal Cataloguer (Technical Services) and with librarians and staff in the Rare Books and & Special Collections and Asian Library. Collaborates with the Library’s conservator. Collaborates with Digital Initiatives librarians and staff involved in digitizing Chinese rare materials. Works with Development staff in maintaining donor relationships and promoting the Chinese rare materials. Works with faculty in providing instruction and/or presentations. Consults with colleagues as required.


Working with the Puban Collection:

  • Provides authentication of the rare books and manuscripts in Chinese.
  • Provides original cataloguing as well as complex copy-cataloguing for rare Chinese materials following international standards (Cataloging Guidelines for Creating Chinese Rare Book Records in Machine-Readable Form) as well as local policies.
  • Works with the Library’s conservator to develop a preservation and conservation strategy for the books.
  • Participates in projects to digitize Chinese rare books, particularly in regards to metadata work.
  • Assists with, develops, and/or maintains relevant documentation pertaining to the local Chinese rare cataloguing standards and processes.
  • Working with the Library Development Office, maintains and develops donor relations and may assist with promotion of the collection.
  • May provide reference, collection, and instruction services and support.
  • Provides reports and documentation on project progress to Project Team on a quarterly basis and as required.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.


This position is a full-time, term appointment for one year.

We are seeking applications from Librarians with up to 3 years of experience.  However, all internal candidates will be considered regardless of years of experience and are encouraged to apply. Salary will be commensurate with experience and academic/professional

Equity and diversity are essential to academic excellence.  An open and diverse community fosters the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented or discouraged.  We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.