Title: Digital Archivist
Department: Library, Heritage Collections
Tenure: Permanent Full time
Location: St Stephens Green campus, Dublin 2
Reporting to: Director RCSI Library Services or Nominee

About RCSI

Founded as the national training body for surgery in Ireland, RCSI, University of Medicine and Health Sciences, has been at the forefront of healthcare education since its establishment in 1784. Today, RCSI is an innovative, world-leading international health sciences university and research institution providing education and training at undergraduate, postgraduate and professional level. We have campuses in Dublin, Bahrain and Malaysia and our high impact translational research enhances patient treatment, informs policy and clinical practice, and improves the quality of education of healthcare professionals. RCSI Library Service supports the University’s education, research and clinical activities and preserves and promotes RCSI heritage for research and public engagement.

RCSI Heritage Collections

RCSI Heritage Collections include the RCSI archives dating from 1784, manuscripts, antiquarian books relating to the teaching and practice of surgery and medicine in Ireland, medical instruments, paintings, portraiture and antique furnishings.  We use CALM software to catalogue and manage the collections.

RCSI Digital Heritage Collections include born digital objects created as part of RCSI business operations and objects digitised for preservation and access. These include online exhibitions, digitised personal papers and photographs, and digital university publications. We use Preservica as the assets management and preservation system for all digital collections and its Universal Access (UA) interface to provide public access to selected digital collections. For further information see


The Digital Archivist will play a key role in maintaining, developing and delivering RCSI digital heritage collections and contribute significantly to promotional and public engagement activities, online and onsite, which use heritage material to support RCSI organisational goals. Working with internal and external stakeholders they will acquire and process historically and institutionally significant digital collections for the benefit of RCSI and future users of the collections.

Working collaboratively within the library team and as a part of a small Heritage Collections team, the post-holder will have responsibility for all aspects of digital heritage collections and associated services. They will work with others across the team, and coordinate and communicate closely with the RCSI Archivist, to drive and deliver innovative approaches to digital heritage collections, onsite and online user engagement, and outreach activities to promote RCSI Heritage Collections to internal and external audiences.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

  • Coordinating and undertaking all aspects of digital collection management, including digitising, cataloguing and preservation of digital resources, both current and historical using our Digital Asset Management System (Preservica).

  • Maintaining and developing an online presence for the RCSI Heritage Collections and digital collections in a manner that will increase awareness and facilitate research use of the collections including the Heritage Collections website, Digital Heritage Collections website (Preservica) and blog.

  • Leading on the development of digital assets work-flow and policy documentation, and training of support staff.

  • Prioritising collections, or parts of collections, for digitisation according to agreed criteria, overseeing the digitisation process and liaising with relevant third parties regarding this process.

  • Cataloguing the collections to recognised standards, and providing appropriate descriptive and analytical information to promote their scholarly research use.

  • Promoting the collections through public engagement activities as appropriate, e.g., online exhibitions, talks, participating in collaborative and consortial sharing of digital collections etc.

  • Responding to internal and public enquiries concerning the collections.

  • Supervision of library assistant from time to time.

  • Performing other duties as set out by the Director Library Services or nominee in response to specific opportunities and needs.

  • Complying with statutory legislation and rules and requirements in furtherance of your own and general staff welfare and safety.

  • Undergoing programmes of training and development relevant to the role and as may be required from time to time.

  • Representing the best interests of RCSI at all times.

Person Specification


  • A recognised postgraduate qualification in archival management or archives & records management or digital preservation.

  • Demonstrated ability to be flexible, tolerate ambiguity, adapt to change, to take initiative and drive projects with minimum supervision while working collaboratively.

  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.

  • Demonstrated experience of managing a digital repository and of working with data structure standards relevant to the archival control of digital collection materials (EAD, Dublin Core, MODS, METS, PREMIS).

  • Demonstrated knowledge of digital preservation standards such as OAIS and Trustworthy Digital Repositories; and experience of cataloguing archives to ISAD(G) and other relevant standards

  • Knowledge of the principles of, and demonstrated experience in, digital records management and cataloguing, preparing digital assets, metadata annotation & data ingestion and associated work flows.

  • Knowledge of records management standards, records retention and disposition schedules, policy and technical issues related to digital records.

  • Excellent IT skills, knowledge, and experience of the technical issues involved in implementing digitisation projects.

  • Strong organisational, project management and administrative skills with the ability to focus, prioritise objectives, produce results, make decisions and meet deadlines.

  • Ability to work efficiently on their own initiative


  • Experience of using Preservica, digital asset management system, or similar and CALM, archives management software.

  • Promotion or public engagement experience relevant to cultural heritage or marketing or communications experience.

  • Evidence of being professionally active within the field and/or evidence of continuing professional development.

  • Understanding of academic research processes.

  • Interest in or knowledge of history of medicine/surgery in general.

  • Knowledge of transfer and donor agreements in addition to rights management issues for personal digital archives and organisational records.

Please Note:

This job description may be subject to change to reflect the evolving requirements of the Department and RCSI in developing healthcare leaders who make a difference worldwide.

Similar vacancies that arise in the next 6 months may be filled from the pool of applicants that apply for this position.

Employees are required to undertake 6 months service in their current role before applying for other internal opportunities, unless agreed in advance by the SMT representative; RCSI is proud to be an equal opportunity employer and welcome applications from all suitably qualified persons regardless of their gender, civil status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability or race.

If you have any particular requirements for your interview, please notify the Human Resources Department at your earliest convenience

Eligibility to work in Ireland is a requirement of this role. Proof of eligibility documentation will be required at a later date. Under limited and specific circumstances (research/ specialist roles) RCSI may be in a position to seek a hosting agreement and/or work permits

Closing date 22nd September.

Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland

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