Research Report: AI for the Information professions
CILIP, the Library and Information Association, has published in May 2021 an interesting research report: ‘The impact of AI, machine learning, automation and robotics on the information profession’, which was also discussed in a recent webinar by the same title.The focus in on answering the questions on whether information professionals have the necessary digital skills and understanding to fully support their users to participate safely and successfully in an artificially intelligent world; what ethical issues are involved in the implementation of these technologies; and what the skillset of the future workforce will look like.
AI and robots have the potential to cause a disruptive change across library and information jobs. They could vastly improve information access; they might change information professional roles and, in some sectors, they already are. AI will replace some elements of human work, specifically repetitive knowledge and service work. However, it also could lead to role expansion. The greatest growth will be in technological skills. Higher cognitive skills may also still be needed, though advanced literacy skills may not be needed in the same prominence. Compared to traditional skillsets, these will shift in balance in the future.