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A core for flexibility


This paper addresses issues of inventing the future of information services from the perspective of a practitioner.

While recognizing deep dedication to privacy, openness, commitment to the under-served, and long-term stewardship of the cultural record, the author acknowledges the impossibility of designing a precise curriculum for mid-21st century information professionals and proposes core subject areas providing an adaptable 21st century skill platform.

Enduring goals of information services professions evolve due to commitment and responsiveness to changing communities and needs, and adaptation to new technologies. The “library” or “archive” is no longer a warehouse for content, but rather a set of services designed by information professionals who simultaneously are reinventing themselves. Our institutions continue as environments that support development of the learner, promote information discovery, and serve as community anchor institutions.

The information professional must be equipped with attitude and analytic capabilities designed for problem solving, able to work both independently and in teams, and capable of constant adaptation. Proposed core curriculum areas:

  • strategic thinking and facility with evidence-based planning and evaluation,

  • ability and skills necessary for trends analysis,

  • ability to effectively teach, train, and empower myriad learner types,

  • ability and skills to respond to the needs of each unique customer.