This paper aims to explore the traditional and emerging roles of cataloguing professionals in a global network information environment. That exploration becomes even more critical in view of migration of information resources into digital, electronic and virtual domains.
An exploratory research design was adopted. The method was to first examine current issues in library and information practice with specific focus on digital technology, the electronic environment, automation, networking, the internet, cyberspace and virtual libraries. The next approach was to examine the challenges of operating in a globalized information environment.
Cataloguers have key roles in knowledge segmentation, identification, organization and authentication. They are vital as content and system managers, software specialists and information retrieval system designers. In all, more than 23 roles are articulated for forward‐looking cataloguing professionals.
The paper's originality lies in its argument that roles are correlates of competencies and that as the practice of knowledge organization migrates to a dominantly global information network environment, cataloguers must upgrade their competencies in order to effectively operate in the emerging environment.
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