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Sound Collections Researcher / Analyst

Vacancy Details

Salary: £32,000 per annum
Location: St Pancras
Job Type: Fixed Term Contract
Vacancy Group: Collections
Category: Information Technology and Development
Closing Date: 03/24/2019
Date Posted: 03/12/2019
Reference: 02664


Full Time, Fixed Term for 6 months

The British Library is home to the national sound collection, comprising over 1.5 million items containing more than 6.5 million recordings of speech, music, wildlife and the environment, dating from the 1880s to the present day. Due to physical degradation and technical obsolescence, many of these recordings are now at risk. One of the aims of the Library’s eight-year Save our Sounds programme is to prevent the loss of this vital collection, and to preserve 60% of the Library’s sound holdings by 2023. An exciting opportunity has arisen to help achieve this aim.

As our Sound Collection Researcher / Analyst, you will research both our unpublished and published sound collections and using a set of established criteria producea priority list of items for preservation, based on metadata in our Sound and Moving Image Catalogue. This will include establishing the extent of multiple versions of commercial releases within the Library’s published collections (including reissues, remasters and variants) on vinyl, shellac, CD and in born-digital formats. Working with stakeholders from across the Library, other international institutions and the UK record industry, you will research other preservation initiatives and likely digital acquisitions. The output of this work will be a data set and a report summarising findings and making recommendations

The successful candidate will have a good knowledge of the UK record industry and experience of discographical research (including working with metadata about sound recordings), a basic knowledge of copyright, cataloguing and preservation standards, be meticulous in their approach to work and a keen and clear communicator.

As one of the world’s great libraries, our duty is to preserve the nation’s intellectual memory for the future. At present we have well over 150 million items, in most known languages, with three million new items added every year. We have manuscripts, maps, newspapers, magazines, prints and drawings, music scores, and patents. We operate the world’s largest document delivery service providing millions of items a year to customers all over the world. What matters to us is that we preserve the national memory and enable knowledge to be created both now and in the future.


In return we offer a competitive salary and a number of excellent benefits.  Our pension scheme is one of the most valuable benefits we offer, as our staff can become members of the Alpha Pension Scheme where the Library contributes 20.9%. Another significant benefit the Library provides is the provision of a flexible working hours scheme which could allow you to work your hours flexibly over the week and to take up to 5 days flexi leave in a 3 month period. This is on top of 25 days holiday from entry and public and privilege holidays.



Closing date: 24th March 2019


Interview date: 8th & 10th April 2019



Description: employer_small (3)

Disability Confident

We are a Disability Confident employer, and make a commitment to recruit and support disabled people. We guarantee an interview for disabled candidates who meet the minimum (essential) requirements for a vacancy.




In order to apply for this vacancy, you must be able to supply the required answers to the following questions:

  • Do you currently have the right to work in the United Kingdom
  • Are you currently a British Library employee or agency member of staff?


Contact 1
Contact Name: Employee Services
Telephone: 01937 882030
Email Address:

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