Tag Archives: Knowledge

Fake News, Evidence Ignored and Knowledge Dismissed

We cannot fail to notice, both professionally and personally, the discussions taking place about information, evidence and knowledge.  How information is used, misinformation shared, known evidence dismissed and knowledge withheld.

One example of fake news was described on Newsnight on August 23rd 2017*. An American travelled 500 miles with a rifle to “self-investigate” a pizza restaurant where an alleged paedophile ring operated and kept under-age children against their will. This news had been reported widely in print and on social media. The source of this news was an investigation into the emails of Hillary Clinton’s personal campaign manager. It was reported that the emails contained the words “cheese pizza” which were thought to be code for “child p-graphy”. The two words shared the same initial letters: c and p. Three shots were fired in the restaurant, there were no under-age children being held and thankfully no-one was hurt.

As we can see from the fake news story, “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing” (itself a misquote from the poet Alexander Pope) but knowledge can also empower us, enable us to say “no”, to achieve, to understand, to form judgements and to make decisions.

We work every day to collect and supply information, signpost evidence and ensure knowledge is mobilised and used in our organisations.  We enable evidence to be used in decision-making, we support the growth of knowledge rich organisations as well as delivering training to help staff critically appraise or discern the usefulness and validity of information. It is that learnt skill that enables wise choices and the avoidance of “fake news”, or in our terms, weak evidence.

But we also need to turn the spotlight on ourselves and ask ourselves questions too.

How do we use information, evidence and knowledge? What is the weak evidence that we use to justify our policies and practices? What are the knowledge needs, preferences and behaviours of the healthcare staff, students, patients and public who use our services? To help us understand these knowledge needs and preferences, two librarians in the South have created a bulletin for us to use.  Please read the bulletin, critically appraise what is included and collectively and individually let’s constructively challenge one another to ensure that facts matter, evidence is crucial and knowledge enables good decisions to be made.

The bulletin will be produced four times a year in September, November, January and March. It will be circulated via your library and knowledge services leads, so look out for the September edition due very soon.

Sue Robertson
Knowledge Services Development Lead (South)

* Eugene Robinson. Newsnight. 23rd August 2017 https://subsaga.com/bbc/news/newsnight/2017/08/23.html

 

Roll the drums and sound the trumpets the Professional Knowledge and Skills Base for Health has arrived

Launched at the CILIP Conference on the 12th July 2016, the Professional Knowledge and Skills Base (PKSB) for Health (login required) is now available.

If only there was a way of encapsulating the broad range of skills and knowledge required to develop the health library and knowledge workforce to meet current and future needs?  Over the last year the Competencies Task and Finish Group have worked with CILIP to create an enriched version of the CILIP PKSB which has examples from a health setting throughout.

The Group have scrutinised every word in the CILIP PKSB and interpreted it for a health setting.  We have also had lengthy debates about what constitutes a competency and the differences between knowledge, skills, values and behaviours.  We have looked at numerous other examples of competency and value frameworks for different professions and have worked tirelessly to produce a tool that can be used by anyone working in the health library and knowledge sector, whatever their role.

The PKSB for Health will only be of use if it is embraced by the whole health library and knowledge workforce and as such we would like to encourage you to take a look and start using the self- assessment tool to plan your own personal development.   Don’t panic – there is no expectation that an individual will have the same level of skills and knowledge across the whole of the Professional Knowledge and Skills Base for Health.  The level of knowledge and skills will vary depending upon your role.

How can it help you?

  • As a self-assessment tool it can help you to plan your personal development and be used as part of the process of gaining professional registration and revalidation by CILIP
  • It can be used to demonstrate your unique skill set to employers and enhance their understanding of the competencies required by library and knowledge staff
  • It can be used to inform role and service redesign, staff training and be used to support staff recruitment and retention
  • It can be used by managers as part of the appraisal and talent management process
  • It will be used to support workforce planning and development at local, regional and national level.

Download the full PKSB for Health (login required)

CILIP members may also access via the CILIP website

Practical suggestions to get you started:

  • Read and share with colleagues the brochure –  The Professional Knowledge and Skills Base for Health
  • Read the full Professional Knowledge and Skills Base for Health
  • Use the self-assessment ratings to score your level of knowledge and skills
  • Identify any areas that you want to develop and think about how you might do that – the Learning Zone may help here
  • Share the PKSB for Health with your employer or line manager and colleagues.
  • Consider using it with your line manager as a way of jointly identifying areas which you want to develop

The second Competencies Task and Finish Group have met to discuss the second phase of their work which will consider additional tools to supplement the PKSB for Health and create resources for role reconfiguration– more of this in a future post.

Please let us know how you get on using the PKSB for Health or get in touch with your LKLS Lead if you would like further information.

Alison Day on behalf of the Competencies TAF

The competent set ……

To be able to deliver the Knowledge for Healthcare Framework, we need an effective knowledge service workforce. As part of the framework document, the following promise was made “we will establish … a competency framework that defines core and specialist competencies …” Cue a Competencies TAF

We first met at CILIP HQ at the end of August to look at CILIP’s existing document called the Professional Knowledge and Skills Base (PKSB); a familiar document to anyone following Chartership. As CILIP had already put a great deal of thought and effort into producing the PKSB, we were delighted to be able to use this as our starting point.  The original, CILIP version is applicable to professionals working in any sector, so we concentrated our efforts in customising it to specifically reflect the work of healthcare information professionals. We have since spent 15 hours of teleconferencing working out way through the document line by line and adapting it to suit the Knowledge for Healthcare Framework. I won’t mention the hours of preparation we undertook before each meeting.

So how are we defining competencies? There are many definitions out there. This link will give you a good overview of the topic.  At the moment we are working on the following definition but it is still being hotly debated as we learn more about this area.

Competency is defined as the expected level of performance that integrates knowledge (cognitive), skills (functional) and attitudes (behavioural)

From this definition we have the knowledge and skills already aligned to healthcare and are now beginning to think about the attitudes that will need to be assimilated into the this framework. Our next set of teleconferences are booked and our Healthcare PKSB is out for consultation with the reference group and you, dear reader, if you would like to help us. We are looking forward to delivering the competency framework in the Spring of 2016.

This stage has been about professional staff, so the next TAF will be looking at an equivalent for paraprofessionals. There will be a call for new members in the Spring so do think about it.

If you have any questions or good ideas, please do email me at mary.hill@christie.nhs.uk

Members of the Group

  • Lesley Allen – Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust
  • Lorna Burns – Public Health England
  • Alison Day – Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
  • Valerie Haigh – Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust
  • Mary Hill (Chair) – The Christie NHS Foundation Trust
  • Madeleine Still – North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust