In the Origin of Species, Charles Darwin sets out his observations on the evolution of species, and survival through adaptation to changing environments. Darwin‘s theories are applied to the current learning environment, which has undergone radical changes. It is argued that academic libraries and library staff need to adapt swiftly to the new learning environment, now that education is high on the political agenda. Institutions of higher education face stiff competition from a range of non‐traditional education providers, and information professionals also risk being usurped by other professions eager to become involved with the Internet. The hybrid information professional and the hybrid library are evaluated as survival strategies for the new learning environment. The history of the hybrid professional is traced through the literature, and initial findings from the hybrid library projects (Phase 3 of the Electronic Library Programme (eLib)) are evaluated.
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