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Information and the information professional

Kevin P Jones (Malaysian Rubber Producers' Research Association)

Aslib Proceedings

ISSN: 0001-253X

Article publication date: 1 September 1991



Librarians are in the fortunate position of having a firm institutional foundation. Books and libraries can exist without librarians or readers, but few would question the nature of libraries as such. Although individual libraries may differ greatly in character, the essence of what a library is remains constant, and there is usually at least a hint of bricks and mortar. The concept of the library is sufficiently strong to be able to use the word for analogous collections of things (such as a library of computer programs) without degrading the overall concept. Information is a far less secure phenomenon: 50% of a library and 50% of the information may both be used in conversation, but whereas we might expect to receive 1500 books (out of total of 3000) in the case of the former, 50% of the information might be found in three books, and the remaining 50% in the remainder of the collection! The position of the information professional is also less secure than that of the librarian who at the very least is the custodian of tangible objects. This insecurity was captured succinctly by the Vickerys in the concluding chapter of a major textbook on information science where it was stated:


Jones, K.P. (1991), "Information and the information professional", Aslib Proceedings, Vol. 43 No. 9, pp. 259-269.




Copyright © 1991, MCB UP Limited

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