Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals

Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals
CILIP: the Chartered Institute of Library & Information Professionals
Cil rgb
Established 2002

The Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) is a professional body representing librarians and other information professionals in the United Kingdom.



It was formed in 2002 by the merger of the Library Association (abbreviated to LA or sometimes LAUK) – founded in 1877 as a result of the first International Conference of Librarians[1] and awarded a Royal Charter in 1898[2] – and the Institute of Information Scientists, founded in 1958. Membership is not compulsory for practice, but members can work towards Chartered Membership which entitles them to the postnominal letters MCLIP, and subsequently toward Fellowship (FCLIP) [sic]. Affiliated members can also obtain ACLIP upon completing certification. Honorary Fellowship (HonFCLIP or FCLIP(hc)), a qualification akin to an honorary degree, is granted to a small number of people who have rendered distinguished service to the profession.


CILIP accredits degree programmes in library and information science at universities in the UK, including City University, London, Loughborough University, the Manchester Metropolitan University, the Robert Gordon University, the University of Sheffield and University College London.

CILIP is perhaps best known to the general public for awarding the Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals for children's books.

CILIP publishes a monthly magazine, CILIP Update with Gazette, including listings of job vacancies. It also runs a publishing imprint, Facet Publishing. There are several local branches across the United Kingdom, 28 special interest groups and over 20 organisations in liaison including such bodies as the African Caribbean Library Association, the Librarians' Christian Fellowship and the Society of Indexers.

CILIP hosts a conference every two years called "Umbrella" (containing 'LA' the acronym of the Library Association). Umbrella 2009 was held in Hertfordshire and so was Umbrella 2011 (July 12-13 at Hatfield).[3][4] The title is abbreviated from "Under One UmbrelLA" a Library Association event held every two years.[5]

Selected special interest groups

  • Aerospace & Defence Librarians Group (ADLG)[6]
  • Affiliated Members
  • Branch and Mobile Libraries
  • Career Development
  • Cataloguing & Indexing Group (CIG)
  • Education Librarians
  • Government Libraries
  • Health Libraries (issues Health Libraries Group Newsletter ISSN 02666-853X)
  • Commercial, Legal and Scientific Information Group (CLSIG)
  • Information Services
    • The group makes the following awards: Walford Award (from 1991, commemorating A. J. Walford); Besterman McColvin Reference Awards which replaced the separate awards of the Besterman Medal (1970-98, commemorating Theodore Besterman) and the McColvin Award (1970-98, commemorating Lionel McColvin) from 2000[7]
  • Information for Social Change (ISC)
  • Library and Information History (LIHG)
  • Library and Information Research Group (LIRG)
  • Local Studies
  • Multimedia and Information Technology Group
  • Patent & Trademark
  • Prison Libraries
  • Public Libraries
  • Rare Books (issued The Library Association Rare Books Group Newsletter ISSN 0307 5826, afterwards Rare Books Newsletter ISSN 0959 1656; now electronically published)
  • University and College Libraries
  • Youth Libraries Group (YLG)

Role in LIS education

CILIP’s policy is to improve all aspects of professional practice through its work in education, maintaining a framework of universally recognised qualifications and providing a wide range of opportunities for CPD. In 2002 CILIP undertook a review of its qualifications framework. The new Framework of Qualifications was launched in April 2005. It is designed to be flexible and adaptable, as the areas will evolve and develop over time to accommodate changing needs. It is appropriate to library and information professionals across the sector as a whole. As such it has a degree of overlap with the knowledge base of other professions.[8]

The framework consists of four levels – certification, chartership, revalidation and fellowship. Certification provides recognition from the association for library and information work by para-professionals. Those who gain admittance to the Register of Certified Members are entitled to work towards Chartered Membership.[9] There are two categories of applicant for Chartership: firstly para-professionals with over five years experience; secondly those who have some evidence of training and have been working for two years.[10]

Chartership is CILIP's standard for information professionals. Chartered members are entitled to use post nominal letters and describe themselves as qualified library and information professionals. All candidates for Chartership must work with a Mentor and demonstrate through their portfolio that they meet the required criteria.[11] Chartership is not an academic qualification but a recognition of the highest standards of professional practice. The individual makes a commitment to continued professional development. Normally applicants will have completed a degree in LIS and have been working for at least one year.[10]

See also

  • Social Networking and UK Libraries


  1. ^ Munford, W.A. A history of the Library Association, 1877-1977, p. 3. London: Library Association, 1977.
  2. ^ Munford, p. 56.
  3. ^ "Making Connections: Umbrella 2009". Retrieved 2011-07-11. 
  4. ^ "Umbrella 2011 Conference & Exhibition". CILIP. Retrieved 2011-07-11. 
  5. ^ "Health Libraries Group Newsletter; vol. 14, no. 3, September 1997". Library Association. Retrieved 2011-07-12.  "the annual conference ... took place within (or under) the Library Association 'Under One UmbrelLA 4 Conference' at UMIST in Manchester"
  6. ^ Aerospace & Defence Librarians Group
  7. ^ "Information Services; reference awards archive". CILIP. Retrieved 2011-04-11. 
  8. ^ Watson, Margaret; ‘Professional qualifications: a CILIP perspective’ in AIDAinformazioni; Vol. 23 No. 4, (2005), p.25
  9. ^ Chapman, Margaret; ‘CILIP qualifications and you’; in Legal Information Management, 6 (2006), pp.264-5
  10. ^ a b Watson, Margaret; ‘Professional qualifications: a CILIP perspective’ in AIDAinformazioni; Vol. 23 No. 4, (2005), p.26
  11. ^ Chapman, Margaret; ‘CILIP qualifications and you’; in Legal Information Management, 6 (2006), p.265

External links

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