February 17, 2018

Hilary Davis | Movers & Shakers 2008

In Context

For Hilary Davis, a biologist turned librarian, academic libraries are living organisms that must constantly adapt to changes in the scholarly ecosystem. As physical science collection manager at North Carolina State University (NCSU) Libraries, she’s a prime agent in that evolution.

Kathleen Brown, NCSU Libraries director for planning and research, calls Davis a pioneer in the use of analytics. But for Davis, detailed statistical analysis of the collection is only half the job. The other half is understanding “the research and teaching cultures” the science collection supports.

Working with faculty to identify promising content for the libraries’ digital repository has helped Davis gain insight into how scholars conduct and publish research. When their chosen resources and methods change, as in the movement toward direct mining of datasets, Davis adapts her collections accordingly.

It comes naturally to Davis, who believes that, in libraries, and life, “context is everything.”


CURRENT POSITION Collection Manager, Physical Science, North Carolina State University Libraries, Raleigh

DEGREE MLS, University of Missouri-Columbia, 2004; M.S. in Biology, University of Missouri–St. Louis, 2001

EXPLORATIONS Has climbed trees in Costa Rica and camped in Kenya