Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals

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CILIP new logo.jpg
Established2002 (20 years ago) (2002)
1958 (Institute of Information Scientists)
1877 (Library Association)
PresidentPaul Corney
Chief ExecutiveNick Poole
Budget£3.9 million[1]
Members9,337 (as of 2019)[2]

The Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, since 2017 branded CILIP: The library and information association (pronounced /ˈsɪlɪp/ SIL-ip), is a professional body for librarians, information specialists and knowledge managers in the United Kingdom. It was established in 2002 as a merger of the Library Association (LA, sometimes LAUK) and the Institute of Information Scientists (IIS).

CILIP in Scotland (CILIPS) is an independent organisation which operates in Scotland in affiliation with CILIP and delivers services via a service level agreement.

CILIP's 2020 goal is to "put information and library skills and professional values at the heart of a democratic, equal and prosperous society".


CILIP was formed in 2002 by the merger of the Library Association (abbreviated as LA or sometimes LAUK) – founded in 1877 as a result of the first International Conference of Librarians[3][4] and awarded a Royal Charter in 1898[5][6] – and the Institute of Information Scientists (IIS), founded on 23 January 1958.[7][8]

The first President of the Library Association had been John Winter Jones and other notable Presidents had included Richard Garnett (1893), Frederic G. Kenyon (1910), W. C. Berwick Sayers (1938), Lionel McColvin (1952) and Douglas John Foskett (1976).[9] The jubilee (50th year) of the Association was celebrated in 1927. Library associations from fourteen European countries and the United States signed a resolution at the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Library Association of the United Kingdom held in Edinburgh which brought the International Federation of Library Associations into existence.

The Library Association offered professional recognition at the level of Associate of the Library Association (ALA), the basic professional qualification, and Fellow of the Library Association (FLA), awarded for a higher level of professional achievement.[citation needed]

Membership of the CILIP on unification in 2002 was estimated at around 23,000.[10] Sheila Corrall was the first President of CILIP,[11] succeeded in 2003 by Margaret Watson.[12]


CILIP headquarters in Ridgmount Street, London

CILIP has its headquarters at number 7 Ridgmount Street, London,[13] in the building purpose-built in 1965 as the headquarters of the Library Association.[14]

CILIP is a registered charity.[15]


The cover of the first issue of Information Professional magazine (November 2017) showing Roly Keating of the British Library

CILIP launched a monthly journal, Information Professional[16] in 2017, providing news, interviews, and analysis. This publication succeeded Library & Information Update[17] which was published from 2002 to 2017 and the Library Association Record[18] published from 1899 to 2002. CILIP publications also include Lisjobnet (a recruitment website), and Facet Publishing (professional books).

CILIP hosts an annual conference for members and non-members. Past keynote speakers include Dr Carla Hayden (Librarian of Congress in the US), Professor Luciano Floridi and Sir Nigel Shadbolt.[citation needed]

CILIP works to raise the profile of the work of librarians and information professionals through campaigns, public affairs activity, and awards and medals, as well as promoting best practice. Campaigns have included My Library By Right[19] (publicising local government's statutory obligation to provide library services), Facts Matter[20] (championing the value of quality information during the 2017 UK General Election), and the annual Libraries Week campaign[21] and Libraries Change Lives Award.[22]

CILIP awards the Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals for children's books. CILIP works in partnership to award the Amnesty CILIP Honour, a special commendation which is part of the Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals. Special interest groups also make their own awards, such as the Jason Farradane Award and Tony Kent Strix Award of UKeiG.

There are over 20 special interest groups for members working with, for instance, rare books and prison libraries[23] and a similar number of 'organisations in liaison' with CILIP, such as Information for Social Change, the National Acquisitions Group, and the Society of Indexers.[24] CILIP, in its previous incarnation as the Library Association, was a founder member of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) in 1927.[25]

Some specialist groups organise conferences such as the annual LILAC (Librarians' Information Literacy Conference), held since 2005 by the CILIP's Information Literacy Group.[26][27]

Professional development[edit]

CILIP accredits degree courses in library and information science at universities in the UK, as well as a number of overseas programmes in China, Germany, Hong Kong, Kuwait, Oman, Thailand and Qatar.[28]

There are three levels of professional registration with corresponding postnominal letters:[29][30]

Honorary Fellowship (HonFCLIP), akin to an honorary degree, is granted to a small number of people who have rendered distinguished service to the profession. CILIP provides opportunities for continuing professional development and a self-assessment tool, the Professional Knowledge and Skills Base. Registered members may revalidate their registration annually.[32]

Membership of CILIP is not compulsory for practice.


The following information on CILIP membership is taken from CILIP Council reports with the exceptions of the estimates for 2002, 2003 and 2005.[33] Membership numbers for 2004 and 2006 are not available.

2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
Number of members ≈23,000[34] 22,689 N/A (20,373)[35] N/A 19,206[36] 18,490 17,634[37] 17,192 15,705 14,555 13,974 13,567 13,163 12,632 11,868 9,793 9,337 9,749

The method of calculation was changed in 2018 to count 'Life Members' as a separate category in published membership statistics and hence these figures do not represent a continuous series. As at January 2019 there were approximately 1,000 'Life Members' of CILIP.

CILIP in Scotland[edit]

CILIPS logo.png
Established1908 (114 years ago) (1908)
PresidentMartina McChrystal
HeadSean McNamara
Members1,200 (as of 2019)
Glasgow, United Kingdom

The Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland (CILIP in Scotland, or CILIPS) is a charitable incorporated organisation affiliated to CILIP.[39] All CILIP members working or living in Scotland are automatically members of CILIPS.[40] Policy, finances, operational matters and advocacy are devolved to CILIPS Trustee Board and staff and CILIP services are delivered via a service level agreement.[41] CILIPS works with the Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC), the advisory body for the Scottish Government on library and information matters.

CILIP in Scotland was originally established as the Scottish Library Association in 1908 and affiliated with the Library Association in 1931.[42] When CILIP was established in 2002, the Scottish Library Association voted to change its name to CILIPS.[43] CILIPS published a professional journal, Information Scotland (ISSN 1479-8441), between 2003 and 2009, which subsequently became a newsletter.


  1. ^ a b "Charity Commission. Data for financial year ending 31 December 2019". Retrieved 12 July 2021.
  2. ^ "Trustees' Report and Financial Statement, 31 December 2019" (PDF). Retrieved 21 May 2021.
  3. ^ Munford, W. A. A History of the Library Association, 1877-1977, p. 3. London: Library Association, 1977.
  4. ^ CILIP, Our look: the brand guide; Ian Anstice, 'CILIP stealth rebrands', Public Libraries News, 1 March 2017; Phil Bradley, 'CILIP the err.. library and information association, Phil Bradley's weblog, 28 February 2017
  5. ^ Munford, p. 56; Royal Charter 1898, amended 1986 and 2002 Archived 3 June 2019 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ A second International Conference was held in London in 1897; Transactions and Proceedings of the Second International Library Conference held in London, July 13 - 16, 1897; 1898
  7. ^ "UIA Yearbook Profile". Union of International Associations. Retrieved 5 March 2021.
  8. ^ Williamson, W. L. (1982). Reviewed Work: The Nationwide Provision and Use of Information: Aslib IIS LA Joint Conference, 15-19 September 1980, Sheffield: Proceedings. "Review [untitled]". The Library Quarterly: Information, Community, Policy. 52 (3): 277–80.
  9. ^ Munford, W. A. A History of the Library Association, 1877-1977, pp. 333-336. London: Library Association, 1977.
  10. ^ CILIP, 'Membership' ("Archived copy". Archived from the original on 6 April 2002. Retrieved 30 October 2014.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)).
  11. ^ "Rallying call to profession as CILIP launched". Information World Review. 179: 1. 2002.
  12. ^ "The Chartered Institute of Library & Information Professionals. (Moves in Brief)". Retrieved 12 April 2018.
  13. ^ Holding your meetings and events at CILIP 2018, CILIP. Retrieved 29 November 2018.
  14. ^ Kent, Allen; Lancour, Harold; Daily, Jay E. (1975). "The Library Association". Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science: Volume 14. CC Press. p. 324. ISBN 9780824720148. Retrieved 1 January 2015.
  15. ^ "Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, registered charity no. 313014". Charity Commission for England and Wales.
  16. ^ ISSN 2515-8015
  17. ^ ISSN 1476-7171
  18. ^ ISSN 0024-2195
  19. ^ "Authors lead support for My Library By Right campaign | The Bookseller".
  20. ^ Onwuemezi, Natasha (10 May 2017). "Wikipedia founder joins CILIP's fight against 'fake news' | The Bookseller". Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  21. ^ "Over 1,000 venues participate in first Libraries Week | The Bookseller".
  22. ^ "Prestigious award for HMP Norwich library service for 'forgotten' prisoners".
  23. ^ CILIP, Special Interest Groups
  24. ^ CILIP, 23 November 2016 Board meeting, Item 14, Appendix A
  25. ^ Johanna L. de Vries, The history of the International Federation of Library Associations: from its creation to the Second World War, 1927-1940, Master's thesis, Loughborough University, 1976, page 9; accessed 29 November 2018.
  26. ^ Bowman, J. H. (24 January 2017). British librarianship and information work 2011-2015. p. 427-8, 434. ISBN 978-1-326-82047-3. Retrieved 27 August 2020.
  27. ^ "About LILAC". LILAC. Retrieved 27 August 2020.
  28. ^ CILIP accredited qualifications (accessed 29 November 2018)
  29. ^ AGCAS. Prospects job profile: Academic librarian, August 2017 (accessed 16 April 2018)
  30. ^ CILIP Royal Charter (accessed 16 April 2018)
  31. ^ Watson, Margaret; ‘Professional qualifications: a CILIP perspective’ in AIDAinformazioni; Vol. 23, no. 4, (2005), pp. 25-26
  32. ^ CILIP, Revalidation (accessed 16 April 2018)
  33. ^ CILIP Council
  34. ^ The figure of ≈23,000 is taken from a copy of the CILIP Web site available on the Internet Archive CILIP Membership, 2 December 2002
  35. ^ Membership at end of September 2006, from an email sent to Branch committee members December 2006. So pre-renewals, i.e. roughly end of year 2005?
  36. ^ From annual report 2008 Annual Report 2008
  37. ^ Membership numbers for 2008 & 2009 from the Annual Report 2009
  38. ^ "CILIPS, Meet the Team". Archived from the original on 5 April 2018. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  39. ^ "Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, Registered Charity no. SC038532". Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator.
  40. ^ CILIPS, Rules and Regulations, section 9 (2016)
  41. ^ Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals. "Service Level Agreement" (PDF). {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  42. ^ Digital, Habanero. "About". CILIPS.
  43. ^ Digital, Habanero. "Timeline". CILIPS.

Further reading[edit]

  • Munford, W. A. A History of The Library Association, 1877-1977 (London: The Library Association, 1976)

External links[edit]