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Update on CILIP Professionalism Definition

22 November 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Gus MacDonald
Update on CILIP Professionalism Definition


Liz Jolly, Chief Librarian of the British Library will lead a second round of consultation of the CILIP “Professionalism Definition”.

In October 2019 CILIP set out to ask the library, information and knowledge workforce “What does professionalism mean to you?”. CILIP wanted to consult with the community on an open, inclusive and progressive definition of libraries, information and knowledge as a “profession”. The definition, once finalised, will be used to inform the current overall review of Professional Registration and future workforce development strategies.

Feedback was invited on a “Professionalism Definition” discussion paper via an online survey. The paper set out three key concepts in our work as the professional association for everyone working in libraries, information and knowledge management – ‘profession’, ‘professional’ and ‘professionalism’. Many thanks to those who engaged with the consultation.

The quantitative results of the survey demonstrated a 68% majority support for the definition. However the qualitative feedback showed a more complex picture with strong opinions and emotions expressed. “What it means to be a professional” is something that deeply resonates with our workforce as part of their individual identity but also as a declaration of the value and benefits our services bring to our end users and society. You can read the full report here.

As a result, the Professionalism Definition was revised in light of the initial feedback received. Given the importance of this work, it has been decided that the revised definition will be tested again through consultation with the workforce. Liz Jolly, Chief Librarian of the British Library, has agreed to lead this second round of consultation by holding two “Town Hall” meetings. The meetings will allow face-to-face and online discussion of the revised definition and will inform the final version of the professionalism definition.

The “Town Hall” meetings will be held in London on 18 December 2019 and Leeds on 10 January 2020. Further details and how to register will be provided online cilip.org.uk/events as soon as possible.


Published: 25 November 2019


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