Liz Jolly


Wednesday 3rd July, 13.30

Librarianship and identity: professionalism in a changing world

The core purpose of libraries – our ‘why’ – is enduring, but how we deliver our services is constantly evolving to enable us to meet the changing needs of our users. The same is also true of librarianship. We should have professional confidence in being a librarian and this means both retaining an ongoing connection to our ethics and identity as a profession and being willing to embrace change, whether in ourselves, our skills or our services.

In this keynote, Chief Librarian of the British Library Liz Jolly will draw on her own successful career to explore how securing the long-term future of libraries and librarianship means going back to the roots of our profession and looking ahead with confidence.

Liz Jolly, Chief Librarian, British Library

Liz Jolly has been Chief Librarian at the British Library since September 2018. She is responsible for teams delivering core activities such as collection development; services for researchers, learners, businesses and entrepreneurs; research strategy and digital scholarship; an extensive cultural programme of exhibitions, events, and the Library’s online presence.

Liz has over twenty years’ experience in a variety of institutions in the university sector, most recently as Director of Student and Library Services at Teesside University. An Honorary Professor at Teesside, Liz is a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Fellow both of the CILIP and the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA). She was Chair of SCONUL (the UK university library directors’ group) from 2014-16, and Chair of the Northern Collaboration, a group of twenty-seven higher education libraries in the North of England, from 2016-18. Liz is a member of the Editorial Board of the New Review of Academic Librarianship and is a former member of the British Library Advisory Council.