Call for Applications for Co-Editor of Libraries: Culture, History, and Society

Call for Applications for Co-Editor of Libraries: Culture, History, and Society

The Executive Committee of the Library History Round Table (LHRT) of the American Library Association (ALA) and the LCHS Search Committee invite applications for the position of co-editor of Libraries: Culture, History, and Society. We seek a co-editor who can contribute to and expand the development of the field of library history by producing LHRT’s scholarly journal, mentoring authors, and fostering diverse, equitable scholarship in library history, both across disciplines and across the globe.

About Libraries: Culture, History, and Society

Libraries: Culture, History, and Society (LCHS) is the official, peer-reviewed journal of LHRT and aspires to be the flagship journal in the research of library history. LCHS aims to study libraries within their broader historical, humanistic, and social contexts. Established in 2015 and having published its first issue in 2017, LCHS offers its co-editors many opportunities to create and shape publication practices to foster innovation and to increase inclusivity and equity. In addition to Library Science, the journal publishes contributions from History, English, Literary Studies, Sociology, Education, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Race/Ethnic Studies, Political Science, Architecture, Anthropology, Philosophy, Geography, Economics, and other disciplines. The only journal in the United States devoted to library history, LCHS positions library history as its own field of scholarship, while promoting innovative, cross-disciplinary research on libraries’ relationships with their unique environments. Published by Penn State University Press, LCHS publishes two issues per year, consisting of four to six research articles, book reviews, and occasional essays. LCHS also publishes special issues, including a forthcoming double issue on Black women librarians, guest-edited by Dr. Nicole A. Cooke. More information about the journal can be found at https://www.psupress.org/journals/jnls_LCHS.html. For more on the history of the journal, see “Welcome from the Editors” from volume 2, no. 1: https://doi.org/10.5325/libraries.2.1.v.

Values of the Journal

LCHS is committed to centering and enhancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in all its practices—not just what it publishes, but whom and how it publishes. Read the full LCHS DEI Statement and Action Plan here.

Co-Editor Duties and Responsibilities

Working collaboratively, the two co-editors of LCHS are responsible for the typical duties of journal editors. In addition, because LCHS is a relatively new publication that is a) sponsored by a professional organization, and b) undertaking significant DEI initiatives, additional responsibilities are as follows:

  • Actively solicit and publish manuscripts of high-quality, diverse content.
    • Mentor new and prospective authors via email, phone, or online meetings;
    • Foster inclusion of authors and stories historically underrepresented in library history scholarship;
    • Serve on LHRT’s Winsor Prize Committee to facilitate publication of the winning manuscript in the journal.
  • Monitor the production operations of the journal to pursue greater equity in journal procedures and to ensure efficient and on-time publication.
    • Implement the journal’s DEI Statement and Action Plan;
    • Maintain rapid, quality, and consistent communication with authors;
    • Review and revise journal operations regularly to remove barriers to authors and readers;
    • Monitor Penn State Press’s move of the journal to a new platform to ensure continuity of access and content.
  • Remain accountable as the journal of record to the library history community.
    • Prepare bi-annual reports for the LHRT Executive Committee and the LCHS Editorial Board;
    • Attend virtual LHRT Executive Committee meetings;
    • Represent the journal in various publishing bodies, such as the LIS Editors Group and the Library Publishing Coalition;
    • Represent the journal in relevant ALA divisions, sections, round tables, and ethnic/specialized caucuses.

Qualifications

  • Experience in conducting and publishing research, sufficient to enable the individual to solicit and select manuscripts of interest to LCHS;
  • Understanding and appreciation of the field of library history in a broad sense;
  • Ability to communicate confidentially, ethically, equitably, and amicably with authors and stakeholders;
  • Capacity to work in a fully electronic environment;
  • Strong organizational skills, ability to set and meet firm deadlines;
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work in a team environment.

Memberships in ALA and LHRT are not required for application and will be provided free of charge for the new co-editor.

Relationship with Other LCHS Editors

The appointment will begin in Spring 2023. The new co-editor will be appointed to a two-year term (2023-2025), with the option to renew with the approval of the LHRT Executive Committee. The new co-editor will work alongside the incumbent co-editor, Bernadette A. Lear, until spring 2025, and the outgoing editor, Eric C. Novotny, until spring 2023. After this period, the new co-editor and incumbent co-editor will share all intellectual and administrative responsibilities equally.

How to Apply

Please send your CV or resume, a cover letter, and a vision statement for the future of the journal. The vision statement should be no longer than two pages and should address:

  • Where do you believe the field of library history is going and where would you like to see the journal within it?
  • How would you maintain and increase the quality and diversity of submissions and authors?
  • How would you provide feedback to authors—especially new authors—on their submissions?

Applications are due by March 15, 2022. Application materials and questions about the position may be directed to Emily Spunaugle, search committee chair, spunaugle@oakland.edu. Appointment will be made by the LHRT Executive Committee and be announced in summer 2022.

The members of the LCHS Search Committee are:

Chair: Emily Spunaugle, LHRT Executive Committee

John Budd, LHRT member

Nicole Cooke, LCHS Editorial Board

Bernadette Lear, LCHS Co-Editor

Carol Leibiger, LHRT Executive Committee

Cindy Nguyen, LHRT member

Brett Spencer, LCHS Book Review Editor

Andrew Wertheimer, LHRT member

Steven Witt, LCHS Editorial Board

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