SCONUL strategy groups: call for new members - Thu, 12 Dec 2019

Following the publication of the new SCONUL Strategy 2019 – 2022, there are a number of exciting opportunities for staff at SCONUL member institutions to join their peers in helping shape the future of our sector.  


We are seeking individuals with a contribution to make across the breadth of the strategy, including the future of content provision, organisational development including EDI, the sector’s use of technologies, service design, communications and statistics. Each of the groups meets around four times a year with at least one of the meetings being virtual.


This is an excellent opportunity to influence and shape the work of both SCONUL and the community. Please consider putting yourself forward. 


If you would like to get involved, but wish to discuss what’s required first, please get in touch either with Pete Ryan, SCONUL Chair or Ann Rossiter to find out more.


How to apply

  • email Ruth Stubbings setting out which group you would like to be involved with and why, including a short biography (your nomination should be no more than 500 words).
  • the deadline for responses is Friday 31 January 2020 
  • you may wish to review our current strategy and the guidelines on the general expectations for group members.

For background, we are seeking to broaden out our engagement with staff at member institutions to include all those with responsibility for library leadership - from those with overall oversight of the library service to those in senior leadership teams within libraries. Traditionally, SCONUL’s main point of contact has been with heads of service but models of leadership are now far more varied and we are seeking to respond to that. We are asking all our members to ensure that all those responsible for leadership within their institution are signed up to ‘lis-SCONUL’.  Please ask them to contact with their email address if they are not on ‘lis-sconul’.


The vacancies

There are opportunities for participation in the following groups:


Content Strategy Group - Four vacancies
The Content Strategy Group leads on SCONUL's work on the cost of content. Its helps shape the future of publisher deals for journals and the development of the market for e-books, text books, and license conditions. The Chair of the group is Stella Butler, University of Leeds and the Vice-Chair is Libby Homer, Anglia Ruskin University. It’s assumed that the majority of members of the Content Strategy Group members will be directors of library services, though other senior and experienced staff are welcome where their interest or experience is of particular relevance. We pro-actively encourage applicants from teaching focused institutions to apply.


BAME workforce group - Eight vacancies
Following the publication of the report of BAME staff experiences of academic and research libraries, a group is being formed to steer SCONUL’s work on equality and diversity. The Chair of the group is Regina Everitt, University of East London. We are keen for the group to reflect the lived experience of staff members and we particularly welcome applications from staff in all roles with a BAME background.


Organisational Development Strategy Group - Four vacancies
The Organisational Development Strategy Group is responsible for considering the needs of the community in relation to developing the current workforce, leadership skills and capacities, and equality, diversity and inclusion in relation to the workforce. The Chair of the group is Caroline Taylor, University of Leicester and the Vice-Chair is Rosie Jones, Teesside University. These vacancies would suit individuals with an interest in organisational development, equality and diversity and continuing professional development. This group is taking forward the work of the Workforce Development Task and Finish Group.


Technology and Markets Strategy Group - Five vacancies
The Technology and Markets Strategy Group works closely with Jisc and other stakeholders to develop and articulate a shared understanding of the development of library infrastructure based on member needs. The Chair of the group is Liz Waller, Durham University and the Vice-Chair is Nick Barratt, Open University. The group will be exploring scope for collaboration across the sector including shared services; the use and uptake of existing and new technologies including the use of artificial intelligence in libraries and digital preservation as an issue for business continuity.


Trends and Futures Strategy Group - Five vacancies
The Trends and Futures Strategy Group will explore long term trends for teaching, learning and research, and their implications for libraries, in particular customer use of libraries. A major focus of this group’s work will be to support members in considering new models for service provision and identifying and developing resources for members to help them plan effectively for their future. The chair of this group is Susan Ashworth, University of Glasgow and the Vice-Chair is John Cox, National University of Ireland (Galway).


Communications Advisory Group - One vacancy
The Communications Advisory Group supports SCONUL members in improving understanding of the value of the library’s contribution to institutional mission and performance, particularly among university senior leadership teams and external stakeholders, and position librarians as strategic contributors to institutional missions. The Chair of the group is Rosemary Lynch, The Tate and the Vice-Chair is Lesley Castens, University of Plymouth. This vacancy would suit an individual with an interest in or experience in communication or marketing.


SCONUL Mentoring Oversight Group - One vacancy
The SCONUL Mentoring Oversight Group oversees the SCONUL mentoring scheme to ensure it runs smoothly and meets the needs of members. The group also reviews mentee submissions and matches them with potential mentors based on the interests and experience of both parties and if practicable, location. The Chair of the group is Alison Baud, Bath Spa University. The vacancy would suit a director with experience of mentoring and a passion for supporting current and future leaders.


Services Steering Group - Two vacancies
The Services Steering Group regularly reviews SCONUL services to ensure their effectiveness, value for money and relevance. In addition it considers the scope for new services and establishes sub-groups as and when required to oversee the development and delivery of specific services.  The group is chaired by Anna O’Neill, University of Southampton.


Statistics Steering Group - Two vacancies
The Statistics Steering Group oversees the development and delivery of the SCONUL statistics service, including the design of the annual questionnaire, analysis of the data and maintenance of the reporting tool. This vacancy would suit an individual with experience in statistical management and learner analytics. The group is keen to have representatives from the sector and would particularly welcome interest from members outside of London and the South East. 


SCONUL is also seeking representation for two external Jisc groups. These are:

  • an advisory steering group to support the development of the UK federation. The aim is to provide advice and guidance on service and development priorities within the UK federation and complimentary aspects of the Jisc Trust & Identity area through a process that identifies and responds to UKf stakeholder needs and supports the implementation of the Jisc Strategic Plan.
  • E-textbook strategy group. Applications would be particularly welcome from those with responsibility for TEL / academic liaison.

For more information on either of these two roles please contact Ann Rossiter.