CILIP publishes equalities and diversity action plan

Book Sculpture by Ellen Forsyth

Today, 31 July, CILIP has published its Equalities and Diversity Action Plan. The plan sets out how CILIP will take practical steps to champion equalities, diversity and inclusion in all its work.

The plan aims to address inequalities in the library and information profession. In particular it identifies steps to address a lack of ethnic diversity and gender pay gap. CILIP carried out research with the Archives and Records Association in 2015 which identified:

  • There is a clear gender pay gap. The library and information workforce is 79% female and 21% male, but 47% of top earners are male.
  • There is a lack of ethnic diversity in the workforce. 97% self-identify as white compared to 88% in the UK workforce.
  • There are high barriers to entry. 61% hold a post-graduate qualification. The highest qualification of most of the UK workforce is A-level or equivalent.

Nick Poole, CILIP Chief Executive said:

“I’m delighted to launch our Equalities and Diversity Action Plan. As a professional body and a sector we are committed to championing equalities and diversity through all our work. The plan puts this commitment into action.

“We are realistic that there are long-standing issues. I’m looking forward to working in partnership to create a more open, representative and inclusive profession and professional body.”

The Equalities and Diversity Action Plan sets out actions in five areas:

  • CILIP as an organisation.
  • Diversity and the membership.
  • Diversity and the profession.
  • Celebrating diversity.
  • Diverse and inclusive library and information services.

CILIP Equalities and Diversity Action Plan, July 2017 from CILIP  


Dawn Finch, Chair of CILIP's Ethics committee said:

“To provide the best services the workforce should reflect society. From children’s librarians working to information professionals across Government and the private sector we need to make sure we are in the best position to understand and meet our customers’ needs.

“We firmly believe that women and men should have the same opportunities and receive the same pay for the same job. And as a workforce we should reflect the society we serve.”

The Action Plan includes forty-four commitments that will take place in the short and long-term - by the end of 2017 and 2020. Among the commitments is an independent review into how equality, diversity, inclusion and participation can best be championed and embedded into the work of the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals. Chair of ActionAid UK Margaret Casely-Hayford is leading the review of the country’s oldest children’s book awards.


Press contact

Cat Cooper, Communications and Campaigns Manager, CILIP
020 7255 0653

Mark Taylor, Director of External Relations, CILIP
020 7255 0654
07792 635 305

Notes for editors

1. About the Equalities and Diversity Action Plan

The CILIP Equalities and Diversity Action Plan has been published on Monday 31 July.

The first action taken has been to publish the CILIP’s Board commitment to promoting equality, diversity and inclusion.

2. About CILIP

CILIP, the library and information association is the leading voice for the information, knowledge management and library profession. CILIP’s goal is to put information and library skills and professional values at the heart of a democratic, equal and prosperous society. CILIP is a registered charity, no. 313014. Visit

More about CILIP’s research about the library and information workforce with ARA


Image Book Sculpture by Ellen Forsyth from Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, cropped and re-sized.

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