Knowledge, Skills and Attributes of a Librarian 2.0

The modern librarian faces both technical and social challenges in acquiring essential knowledge, skills and attributes for successful information professionals in the Web 2.0 environment as they transition toward new Library 2.0 frameworks. Librarians seeking to remain relevant in the industry need to acquire the technical Web 2.0 knowledge of using Content Management Systems (CMS) such as WordPress and JOOMLA to provide platforms for Library 2.0 websites that address Gates’ (2009) 4Cs of Web 2.0. CMS platforms are important Web 2.0 tools for building collaborative, conversational relationships in an online community that can benefit from co- creation because they enable the co creation of blogs and microblogging content. Librarians also need to develop a range of technical knowledge and skills in the use of social media such as the social networking applications of Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Instagram and PInterest. The development of knowledge and skills in other forms of social media such as YouTube, Delicious and Flickr are also increasingly valuable because they contain resources that can be segmented by libraries for a range of audiences.

A significant attribute needed by librarians in the Library 2.0 environment is to view the Web 2.0 environment as a social web (Alexander, 2006).  Stephen Abram (cited in Partridge, Lee and Munro, 2010) suggests that information professionals who are able to acquire a conceptual understanding of the needs of their audiences and address them using their technology skills will be have addressed the attributes of a Librarian 2.0 and be seen as a ‘guru of the information age’. Cohen (cited in Kingrss, 2006) outlines a range of socially proactive attributes that should guide a the actions of a librarian 2.0. including an embracement of Web 2.0 technologies and the development of a user focused online presence. Harvey (2009) has further identified RSS feeds, chat, podcasting, tagging and voicethread application skills as necessary for the Librarian 2.0 to develop more user focused social attributes that better serve and collaborate with their community. Despite the initial confusion among librarians about what Library 2.0 means for them (liseducation, 2009), Farkas (2007_a) has outlined the skills and attributes needed for librarians to develop their use of social software (through courses like Five Weeks to a Social Library) and advocates for a balanced approach to funding (Farkas, 2007_b) for the training of information professionals of institutions who are seeking to address the modern needs of their communities.




Alexander, B. (2006). Web 2.0: A new wave of innovation for teaching and learning?. Educause review, 41(2), 32. Retrieved from:


Kingrss (2006). A Librarian’s 2.0 Manifesto. A manifesto by Laura Cohen, 2006. (Video slideshow mash up by Soren Johannessen, Copenhagen. Retrieved from:


Farkas, M. G. (2007_a). Social software in libraries: building collaboration, communication, and community online. Information Today, Inc.. retrieved from:


Farkas, M. (2007_b). Keynote Speech in: UC Berkeley Events (2007) Building Academic Library 2.0.


Harvey, M. (2009). What does it mean to be a Science Librarian 2.0? Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship, (Summer). Retrieved from
liseducation. (2009). Librarian 2.0. Comments from delegates at the 2008 ALIA New Librarians Symposium on library 2.0 and library education 2.0. retrieved from:

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