Job: Senior Librarian

4.6.17 –  Senior Librarian
Royal Thimphu College, Thimphu, Bhutan

Sarah P’s comments: This is a position in a place which people dream about going, myself included. However, there are certain realities to be thought about.  First of all, when I posted the position previously (2014), a friend of the librarian who had just left shared: the pay was too low to cover expenses because the housing allowance just barely covers their housing and does not include heat. And, while the flight to and from is paid for, you have to pay for your own breaks and just getting out of Bhutan to India or Singapore or Bangkok or wherever is upwards of $1,000. Local things are cheap there, but all the “upscale” Bhutanese/expat places in Thimphu are similar to prices you’d find everywhere.

Please keep in mind that is a ‘hearsay’ statement as folks have varying standards and needs.  However, please do pay attention to the statement “Salary will be at local rate and paid in local currency” (currently stable but with a downward trend for past 10 years). I think it is a matter of clearly deciding whether the experience, both professional and personally, is worth the sacrifice.  Also stated is you must be “willing to stay in the position for at least one year” which is actually good for someone who might be able to do a sabbatical. Bottom line, do you research before deciding to apply, and it could be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.  More information:

FAQ for Expatriate Faculty
Glassdoor Reviews
US article about Royal Thimpu College (2011)

Talking Matters with Janet Schofield, Royal Thimphu College (YouTube video)

The Senior Librarian will manage the planning, administrative, management and budgetary functions of the college’s library services.  He or she will ensure the provision of professional and responsive library services to the college community, including but not limited to:


 Library Management

  • Manage and develop convenient, accessible library and information services
  • Manage all library activities and take full responsibility for the library services of the college, including the safety and security of the library’s facilities and resources
  • Develop and implement library and information policies and procedures for the college
  • Analyze and evaluate library and information services, including technology and media service requirements
  •     Supervise, train, evaluate and recruit as necessary a team of library workers (including  2 assistant librarians and student workers), as well as develop work schedules
  • Manage library budget and all library expenditures, including procurement of materials
  • Explore possibilities for grants and other fundraising activities to enhance the library’s collection and functioning.

Public Services

  • Provide and ensure provision of reference and research assistance
  • Provide library and information-literacy training and instruction for students and staff
  • Organize outreach activities to stimulate use of the library’s programs and services
  • Initiate interlibrary loans where possible

Technical Services

  • Manage the integrated library system
  • Direct all cataloging, DDC classification, and collection management
  • Manage collection development and acquisition of all new materials
  • Work effectively with faculty to organize and manage materials on reserve for college courses
  • Oversee verification of bills for new procurement  and maintenance of records for payment of invoices


Education:      An advanced degree in library science.

Experience:    The candidate should have at least 2-3 years of work experience as a librarian.

Knowledge and Skills: Skilled in library organization and management, including training and

supervising staff (including student workers). Good knowledge of integrated library systems, reference and research assistance, database searching, etc. Strong interpersonal skills.

Personal attributes: Hard working, active interest in providing high-quality service, excellent oral and written English language skills, attention to detail and ability to build others’ knowledge and enthusiasm for effective information retrieval.  International experience is very desirable, but not essential.


The Senior Librarian reports directly to the Dean. The position may require some evening and weekend work on a rotation basis.


Salary will be at local rate and paid in local currency (Ngultrums).  Start date is August 1, 2017 or thereabouts.


Royal Thimphu College is located just 6 miles outside of Thimphu, the capital city of Bhutan, in a peaceful natural environment.  Summers are pleasant and warm while winters are cold but sunny and clear. Thimphu, at an altitude of about 7,000 feet, has a population of just over 100,000 people including resident expatriates from many countries. Access to Thimphu, which has numerous restaurants and shops as well as the country’s best medical facilities, is provided by city bus service.  On campus housing is available for many of the faculty and staff.


Royal Thimphu College, founded in 2009, is Bhutan’s first private college. It has about 75 faculty and enrolls about 1100 students in a wide variety of fields including business, IT, environmental studies, economics, political science, sociology, English and Dzonghka. It has an award winning exchange program with Wheaton College in the U.S. and faculty and staff from about a half dozen countries. For more information see   The academic year starts in late February and goes to the second week of December with a 2-3 week break in July and a long winter break during which the librarian would be free to stay in Bhutan or to travel.


Send a C.V. and a cover letter outlining your relevant experience and the date you would be available to Dr. Janet Schofield at   Applicants will not be considered unless they are willing to stay in the position for at least one year.  Applications received before May 1, 2017 will be given preference. However, applications will be considered until the position is filled.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s