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*Position filled. Learn about current fellowship opportunities here.*

New York Public Library, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture
Postdoctoral Fellow in Data Curation for African American and African Studies


Founded in 1925 and named a National Historic Landmark in 2017, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture is one of the world’s leading cultural institutions devoted to the collection, preservation, and study of materials focused on the African American, African Diaspora, and African experiences. Begun with the collections of Arturo Alfonso Schomburg ninety-three years ago, the collection now spans over 11 million items, enabling the Schomburg Center to encourage lifelong learning and exploration with diverse programming that illuminates the richness of black history and culture worldwide.

This two-year, full-time Postdoctoral Fellowship in Data Curation for African American and African Studies, funded by a grant from the Council for Library and Information Resources (CLIR), offers unique cross division projects, independent research, collaboration curators and scholars, access to internal and external archival resources, mentoring, and professional development. Reporting to the Curator of Manuscripts, Archives, and Rare Books (MARB), with guidance from the Associate Chief Librarian for Research and Reference and with the Scholars-in-Residence program director, the fellow will work independently and collaboratively to gather and curate data and resources for assigned digital projects. Projects may include, but are not limited to, abolition, transatlantic slavery, the Green Books, early Black librarianship, and other collections, especially in tandem with our ongoing Home to Harlem initiative. Additionally, the fellow will assist in Schomburg Center digital projects such as developing, implementing, and executing our Digital Schomburg platform, including digital exhibitions, the Green Books, mapping projects, and other digital data assets and archives. The fellow will have an opportunity to participate in the cohort of fellows in our Scholars-in-Residence Program, receive mentorship from its director, and work with our Lapidus Center for the Historical Analysis of Transatlantic Slavery on an upcoming conference. The fellowship offers flexible time for independent scholarship, support for professional development, and benefits options.

Key Responsibilities

  • Research and compile data and resources related to specific Schomburg Center collections
  • Process, preserve, and curate content related to the Digital Schomburg platform
  • In consultation with curators, prepare data for digital curation online
  • Contribute to the infrastructure for digital archives, access tools, digitization, and related issues
  • Manage complex projects across divisions and consult as needed with appropriate NYPL staff

Required Education & Experience

  • Must have completed a doctoral program in African and/or African American Studies, American Studies, History, English, or related fields in the past five years or before beginning the fellowship

Required Skills

  • Demonstrated experience with archival records
  • Familiarity with digital humanities methods such as TEI textual markup, textual analysis use tools such as Natural Language Toolkit and Python, geospatial analysis tools such as Gephi and ArcGIS

Preferred Qualifications

  • Research and scholarship in African and/or African American Studies broadly defined
  • Three years experience in a research or academic library or related digital humanities environment
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills and ability to interact with a diverse community
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