Collections Researcher, The Museum of English Rural Life

Reference No.SRF32024 Location:Reading Salary:£25,217 - £30,048 per annum Main duties:

This post will support a range of collections-related activities that form part of the Building
Connections project funded by Arts Council England’s Designation Development Fund. The project’s
aim is to create a researched digital pathway to better understanding of the context of groups of
objects, whether as part of our gallery displays, handling material or our open access stores. Themes
already under consideration include decolonisation and migration. Drawing on the MERL’s Designated
archive and library as well as academic, community and curatorial expertise from across the country,
with further international potential, the project aims increase both research and public engagementled interest in The MERL’s collections and to act as a model for the sector.

Database and Terminology
• Use the Museum’s Adlib database and Enterprise searching system and other databases to
research themes for digital interpretation, under supervision of the Curator and Principal
• Undertake training to use the in-house digital exhibition tool and then prepare exhibitions and
trails to enhance the gallery interpretation and online presence of The MERL
• Undertake digitisation of items where appropriate and add digital assets to The MERL’s Digital
Asset Management System (DAMS)
• Make approved changes to data held on the database, under supervision of the Curator or
Principal Archivist.

Collections Management
• Support the Curator in work connected to loans, enquiries, acquisitions, disposals and
transfers concerning the object collection
• Undertake object research, as required to enhance interpretation in the galleries and online
and occasionally to support accessioning and other elements of collections management
• Contribute to regular reporting regarding ongoing project activities, especially in relation to
the Building Connections project
• Support activity related to the assessment of objects for use in hands-on access and public
engagement, as required
• Create pop-up and other temporary displays of objects and archives for the visiting public that
are linked to or illustrate the themes developed through digital means.

Audience Engagement
• Support the Museum and Archive in delivering better access to collections for visiting
researchers; this will involve training and may include serving as an occasional reading room
assistant or helping to accommodate visiting researchers requiring access to particular
museum objects
• Work with the Curator, Learning and Engagement Manager and others to develop a process of
consulting with users, community members, academics and others to identify themes for
enhanced digital interpretation.
• Undertake evaluation of the digital resources produced, including gathering evidence of use
and feedback on the effectiveness of the interpretation.

Interview date:30/03/2020 Closing date:15/03/2020 Job Description:

The Museum of English Rural Life at the University of Reading is seeking two collections’ researchers to help us to deliver exciting new digital content for our website and our galleries.  You will be part of our Arts Council England funded “Building Connections” project, a Designation Development Fund initiative.

You will have:
•    Excellent written and oral communication skills
•    Good working ability with collections’ databases
•    Strong team working skills
•    An interest in rural artefacts and archives, alongside their history

There are two roles being recruited and both are fixed term for 12 months.

Further information and to apply, please click here:

  Full details [external link]

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