Definition of an information professional in a Web 2.0 world



As a beginner librarian, Cohen’s (2006) manifesto clicked with me on so many different levels.  There is so much good advice listed there for librarians old and new. I also believe that an essential part of being in an information professional in a Web 2.0 involves embracing the meeting of old and new, collaboration between the traditional library and the digital information centres.


The essential knowledge that an information professional in a Web 2.0 world needs includes an understanding of how social media and social networking now allow people to interact both socially and educationally.  It also includes knowledge of how to use these platforms as best suited to their environment and workplace. Cohen (2006) encourages us to not fear “Google” or other related services but to learn and take advantage of all that they have to offer.


Essential skills that are needed include the ability to use technology for both social and educational applications.  These include the LMS of their workplaces, the range of computers and digital devices now becoming commonplace in the classrooms, and personal devices for their own networking.

I have included accepting  “user feedback” in this list of skills as I believe in order to keep learning and keep improving our skills and therefore the library services, it is important to listen to what our users are telling us and adapt the services for them when necessary.


Essential attributes include a willingness to learn and be open to change.  Partridge (2011) points out that one of the biggest attributes a successful information professional in a Web 2.0 world can possess is to change their mindset and attitude to embrace this new world. This includes a willingness to learn and to use and share new resources for the good of their workplace.

In order to carry out our work as a successful librarian or information professional in a Web 2.0 world, we need to be flexible and adaptable enough to keep abreast of new technology and trends as they become available. As Charles Darwin once wrote, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change”.  Let us all continue to thrive and adapt to the ongoing change!



Cohen, L. (2006). A Librarian’s 2.0 Manifesto. Retrieved from


Partridge, H. (2011). Being “Librarian 2.0”: It’s all in the attitude. Library Connect. Retrieved from



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