IMLS Research Specialist

Job description

Requisition # 2018-8659
Department Art Museum
Category Arts and Museum Administration
Full-Time / Part-Time Part-Time
Application Deadline


The Princeton University Art Museum, one of the nation's preeminent cultural institutions in an academic setting, seeks applications for the position of a half-time Research Specialist for a 24-month term position to join a team dedicated to improving providing full digital access to the Museum's drawing collections. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to work within the context of an art museum that is intimate in scale yet expansive in scope, supporting one of the most dynamic exhibition programs on any college campus and a program of educational activities and events that continues to grow in energy and impact each year.

With collecting origins dating to the 1750s, the Princeton University Art Museum is one of the finest art museums in the country. Formally established in 1882, its collections feature about 100,000 works of art ranging from ancient to contemporary art and spanning the globe. Its collections of Chinese painting, the art of the ancient Americas, and photography are widely regarded as being among the world's richest. A private institution serving the public good, the Museum is committed to serving the University, local and regional communities, and beyond through a dynamic program of temporary exhibitions, new scholarship, and innovative programming. By collaborating with experts across many disciplines, fostering sustained study of original works of art, and uniting scholarship with broad accessibility, the Museum contributes to the development of critical thinking and visual literacy at Princeton University and enhances the civic fabric of our nation.

To learn more about the Princeton University Art Museum, please visit


The Research Specialist (50% FTE) will be responsible for a thorough investigation of approximately 500 of the Museum's European, British, and American drawings that are currently unpublished and/or understudied. The Research Specialist will work closely with the Museum's Information and Technology department, while reporting to the Curator of Prints and Drawings, utilizing best practices in the cataloguing the newly researched works of art. In close coordination with the Curator of Prints and Drawings, the Research Specialist will be responsible for executing library and online research to resolve the object data relating to function, dating, technique, attribution, provenance, and iconography, and to develop interpretive texts.

Job duties include:

  • Execute object research in libraries and online to resolve the object data relating to function, dating, technique, attribution, provenance, and iconography, and to develop interpretive texts
  • Organize, compile, and digitize (as needed) source documents for object research
  • Enter compiled research as new or revised data in The Museum System® (TMS) collections information management system, using best practices in the cataloguing the newly researched works of art and adhering to established standards and guidelines
  • Confer regularly with Curator of Prints and Drawings to determine definitive results of research
  • Confer with collections information staff to ensure the use of appropriate authority tools


Essential qualifications required:
  • Bachelor's degree required in art history, museum studies, or related discipline; Master's degree in related field, particularly specialized in the history of Western drawings, strongly preferred
  • One to three years demonstrated object-based research required, preferably in a museum setting
  • Excellent oral, written, and interpersonal communication skills
  • Fluency in at least one foreign language, preferably Italian and/or German
  • High degree of organization, self-motivation, and great attention to detail is critical
  • Proficiency using multiple operating systems (Windows and Mac OSX) and basic software including Microsoft Office Suite and Adobe Creative Suite
  • Ability to work independently and efficiently to produce consistent, high-quality results over long-term project

Preferred qualifications
  • Familiarity with drawing techniques and materials
  • Reading knowledge of at least one foreign language, preferably Italian and/or German
  • Collection management or museum registration experience preferred
  • Experience with relational databases and collection management database software (especially TMS) highly desirable

Finalist will be required to successfully complete a background check.

Princeton University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. EEO IS THE LAW

Salary Grade

ASR, 010

Standard Weekly Hours


Eligible for Overtime


Benefits Eligible


Essential Services Personnel (see policy for detail)


Comments Related to End Date

24 month term position.

Physical Capacity Exam Required


Valid Driver's License Required


Connect With Us! Join our Talent Network to receive updates about working at Princeton.

Princeton University requires all candidates to complete a background check successfully prior to the start of employment. The type and extent of background checks may vary depending on job requirements and/or functions.

If you have questions or comments regarding the iCIMS Privacy Policy or iCIMS FAQs, please contact [email protected].

Go to our careers site.





Diversity Profile: University



View more

Learn more on Inside Higher Ed's College Page for University

Arrow pointing right
Job No:
Posted: 4/14/2018
Application Due: 6/12/2018
Work Type: