Applications invited for undertaking research on Continuous Professional Development of Public Librarians


Terms of Reference
For Researcher/Consultant

Title of Research
Continuous Professional Development Roadmap for Public Librarians: Current Scenarioand Possibilities

Background and Rationale
The concept of public library has witnessed sea changes in the recent past – from a classical quiet, librarian controlled, centre of books to anemerging centre of knowledge and learning responding to the varied needs of the community. The libraries are now envisioned to provide a vibrant and inclusive knowledge space.

With the renewed focus of the libraries, the role of the librarians ought to respond to these changes. Using ICT as a tool for library management and information dissemination, identifying the needs of the community and proposing appropriate service delivery are some of the newer and dynamic roles for the librariansbesides the already existing responsibilities of staff and infrastructure management. Hence, Continuous Professional Development (CPD) of the librarians must go alongside to address the changes being introduced in the public library sphere globally.

In India, professional development opportunities for public librarians are few and far between. There are both government and non-government agencies, such as Raja Rammohun Roy Library Foundation (RRRLF, supported by the Ministry of Culture), DELNET (supported by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and the Ministry of Culture, Government of India), Information and Library Network (INFLIBNET–anautonomous centre under the University Grants Commission), well as the IPLM capacity building programme and International Network of Emerging Library Innovators (INELI-India) incubated by the MS Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) in India for the capacity building of the librarians.

But, their CPD objectives and focus areas differ vastly from each other. Except the training programmes of IPLM and INELI-India, the others focus more on IT and LMS skills rather than soft skills or leadership skills. For the librarians, leadership skills are a must for building partnerships, organising events and undertaking other activities that have become the forte of new-age libraries.

Research Objectives
Therefore, in order to develop a CPD roadmap for the library professionals, it is important to map the nature and frequency of existing programmes and identify gaps that need to be addressed. Following are the main objectives of the research on Continuous Professional Development Roadmap for Public Librarians: Current Scenarioand Possibilities:
• Map existing government/non-government Training and Capacity Building (T&CB) programmes for library professionals and assess their model, nature and frequency.
• Determine current training needs basis the transformation requirements in the library space.
• Chalk out a CPD roadmap for theT&CB of the public librarians.

Research Questions
Considering the objectives of this research, the main research questions would be:
• Are the prevailing T&CB programmes addressing the issue of professional development of librarians? If not, why? What are the challenges, bottlenecks and concerns? Isthe present model, nature and frequency ofT&CB adequate and effective?
• What are the current T&CB needs of the librarians?
• What method/processes should be adopted to impart such T&CB programmes which are need based and responsive?
• What measures should be taken and at what level to make them continuous and sustainable?
• What kind of trainings/exposures are needed for the other stakeholders in the public library system in order for them to understand the changing training and capacity building needs in the public library space so that they could better facilitate the process?

Scope of Research
The scope of research would include mapping current training programmes, identifying the gaps, and based on these, prepare a CPD roadmap for public librarians that addresses their current T&CB needs.

Research Methodology
The researcher would propose an appropriate methodology to conduct this research including the tools based on the objectives, research questions and scope of research in his/her proposal. It would be finalised in consultation with the IPLM team.

Required Qualifications and Selection Process
This assignment requires a professional researcher with 5-8 years of experience. A background in training/capacity building, public library or social/development sector would be appreciated. For selection purpose, based on this ToR, the researcher would be expected to share a proper research proposal with timelines on the following email: shipra@iplm.inwithin 15 days of posting this ToR. The proposals will be reviewed by an expert panel and the final selection would be made on the basis of an interview. The decision of the IPLM Secretariat would be considered as final in this regard.

Duration of Research
The total duration of the research would be 30 working days spread over a period of three months with provision of up to one month no cost extension for finalising the research paper based on the feedback of IPLM expert panel.

A report containing a clear roadmap for CPD of public librarians in India basis exploration of the research questions above.

Total Consultancy Fee and Tranches of Payment
The researcher would be given a consolidated amount upon submission of publication worthy research paper. Payment would be made in two tranches:
• 1st tranche – upon submission of first draft of the paper for review by IPLM focal point
• 2nd tranche – upon submission of satisfactory final draft
Travel and logistics payments would be made as per the actual bills submitted and as per IPLM/NASSCOM Foundation travel and logistics rules. The added value of undertaking this research would be publication of the research paper in a reputed LIS journal/edited book.

The research conducted would be the property of IPLM; IPLM would reserve the right to publish the research, quote it in any form and forum with due recognition to the research consultant.

Point of Contact
The Senior Manager, Research & Documentation, IPLM Secretariat, would be the focal point for this assignment with whom the researcher would be expected to work closely during the course of the assignment. The R&D specialist would keep the IPLM T&CB team in the loop during the research process to ensure that the research feeds into ongoing T&CB efforts and is also able to get the inputs needed in theprocess from the concerned team.