The information society: does it need the information professions?


  • John Feather



information society, information profession, professionalism, professional education and qualifications


A profession is constituted by a group of people with a shared body of knowledge and skills, based on formal training and well defined criteria. But the knowledge and skills which characterise the information profession, as defined by CILIP in the Body of Professional Knowledge and other documents, are no longer confined to those who describe themselves in this way, or feel any attachment to the information profession as traditionally defined. The paper discusses how this group do, can and should contribute to the so-called 'information society'. It challenges the idea that information society is in itself something new, and focuses more on the concept of the 'knowledge economy' in which information (and therefore information workers) have a key role. The challenge for the profession is to go beyond its own recognition of its knowledge, skills and insights, and to persuade others of the contribution it (and they) can make.

Author Biography

John Feather

Professor of Library and Information Studies, Loughborough University, UK.






Invited Contributions