Improving Librarian Potential towards Digital Era through 4 Competencies

The advancement of the digital era has brought changes in public information media to become more dynamic, including library services in Indonesia. Accelerating access to data and literature through electronic media has changed the perspective, especially for librarians to develop their knowledge and competencies related to digital library management. With this background, Universitas Brawijaya as one of the educational institutions that is also committed to carrying out the vision of digital transformation through the E-Library held the Indonesian Digital Library Conference (KPDI) on Wednesday (9/8) entitled “Gathering the Future through Digital Preservation of Indonesian Local Knowledge ( Culture, Knowledge, and Learning). The holding of the 14th KPDI cooperates with the Indonesian Digital Library Forum and is supported by the National Library of Indonesia as the Trustee of the Indonesian Digital Library Forum.

The 14th KPDI 2023 aims to be a forum for sharing experiences, knowledge, suggestions and formulas regarding library revitalization in accelerating information in the digital world. Various events were held to support the 14th KPDI event. A series of events such as the workshop “Implementation and Development of Artificial Intelligence Technology (AI) in Libraries” by Prof. Ir. Wayan Firdaus Mahmudy, SSi, MT, PhD, as the Dean of FILKOM UB and Chair of UB AI Center and the material “Librarian Competence in the AI Technology Era by Ida Fajar Priyanto, MA, PhD”. Presentation of Keynote Speakers: by Achmad Charris Zubair (Chairman of Yogyakarta City Cultural Council 2003-2021) with the material “The Role of Information Technology in the Digital Age in Preserving Cultural Heritage” and “Preserving Local Cultural Covers for Learning” by Dr. Riyanto, M.Hum (UB). In addition, this conference was attended by various practitioners from various backgrounds consisting of librarians, lecturers, teachers, students, digital information technology observers to library observers.

In his speech, UB Rector, Prof. Widodo, SSi, MSi, PhD, Med.SC revealed that advances in electronic media have confronted libraries with various challenges, one of which is the large volume of information that arrives quickly and almost simultaneously at one time. Therefore, a librarian needs to have four basic competencies that must be developed, namely the ability to accurately digital data, analyze important data, conserve and preserve data. “It is undeniable, in this era there is a lot of content flowing in, so librarians must be able to carry out content accuracy and careful data analysis, otherwise negative content, hoaxes and invalid news can spread and dominate in society, especially on social media. In the past, data conservation and preservation was like a scientific journal in the form of a paper, physically visible, difficult to manipulate, but now with the development of the times, now its form has shifted to digital. These digital data are easy to infiltrate, vulnerable to viruses or malware, scams and so on. Of course it can be dangerous, such as losing (data loss) permanently,” he explained.

In line with the design of AI University which is being built by the Rector, Prof. Widodo also emphasized that currently his party is consistent in building Brawijaya campus as a digital campus through collaboration with the Japanese government, Arterial Research and Educational Network in the Asia Pacific (ARENA-PAC) in terms of high-speed internet network assistance (bandwidth) of up to 100 gigabytes per second (Gbps). This network allows accelerated data exchange with other research and educational institutions, especially overseas, besides that digital information can also be utilized by the general public without having to be constrained by connections.

On the other hand, the Head of the National Library (Perpusnas), Muhammad Syarif Bando, responded that the collaboration that exists between UB and ARENA-PAC can be a utility for the development of digital learning in the campus environment, considering that this collaboration provides opportunities for academics to access sources of information and journals from around the world more effectively.

Syarif Bando has a view that librarians must be able to explain to the public about the latest and future knowledge, where according to him the amount of electronic information maintenance is still very limited. So we need librarians who have the ability to repackage information. According to him, a librarian is a reader and collects knowledge around the world, it is their job to collect and package all this knowledge. This makes librarians the highest profession because most other professions also really need them. [UB PR/ Trans. Iir]