5 Fellows and Honorary Fellows

Sandra Ward

The grade of Fellow existed from the start of IIS and all the first members of Council were appointed Fellows.

The award of Honorary Fellowships to celebrate those achieving distinction in information work came later. In 1975 Council agreed that Honorary Fellowship should be offered to several eminent figures in the information world.  The first awards were made in 1976.

Both Fellows and Honorary Fellows were corporate members of the Institute and thus had full voting rights at AGMs etc.


Fellowship of the Institute was granted at Council’s discretion to a Member who had worked for at least ten years in an information role, and had either attained distinction by virtue of work in a senior position, or by virtue of original work in the information field, or had otherwise rendered distinguished service to the Institute.

The granting of Fellowships was carefully controlled to ensure quality was maintained.  Fellowship required nomination. Initially this was the responsibility of Membership Committee but from 1987 selection was made by the Professional Standards Committee. From 1996/97 this evolved into Professional Standards and Development Committee.

In 1985 new guidelines for Fellowship were agreed. Byelaw 5 and Article 7 stated that “Council will review the IIS membership list annually with a view to elevate those suitable to fellowship”. A member might be considered following a proposal accompanied by two supporting members at least one of whom was a Fellow. No-one could propose themselves. Proposals would be requested at a Council meeting. These were then evaluated by Membership Committee for consideration at the next Council meeting. Final election/selection was then made at a third meeting. Whilst this process would take six months it was thought worthwhile, given the importance of honouring the right members.

From 1987 requests for nominations were published in Inform. In that year, the award of Fellowship for distinguished service to IIS provoked a discussion in Council. There was a concern that the award of Fellowship for services to the Institute would put it out-of-line with other professional organisations. The prevailing view (12 votes to 9) was that there was nothing to be ashamed of in having these two criteria and the status quo should be preserved. However, there was unanimous support for opening up the process and a call for nominations for elevating distinguished members to Fellows would be made in Inform at the beginning of each year[1].

At the 1987 AGM, members asked that other means than Fellowship be sought for recognising service to the IIS to ensure that Fellowship was awarded only for service to information science. In 1988 Professional Standards and Development Committee were actioned by Council to examine the best way to recognise distinguished service by members. It was concluded that devising a meaningful award which would be valued by members and which would be distinct from Fellowship would be too difficult. The issue was dropped by Council in 1988.

Honorary Fellowship

The granting of Honorary Fellowships was introduced in 1976 and enshrined in the IIS Articles of Association from inception. These celebrated both the achievements of IIS members and other trailblazers in information science and were presented at the AGM.

In 1983 the recommendations of the Fellowship review confirmed that Council would consider the awarding of Honorary Fellowships annually according to Byelaw 5 and Article 7. Any person of distinction in information work may become an Honorary Fellow but no self-nomination was permitted. These recommendations were formally approved in 1985.

IIS members were asked for nominations; these were scrutinised by Membership Committee (later Professional Standards Committee) who presented recommendations to Council. The awards were then presented at the AGM.

Recipients received a certificate at the AGM and from then they no longer needed to pay a membership subscription.

Normally only one or two Honorary Fellowships were awarded annually – and in some years none. The award process was stringent; Inform announced calls for nominations; the Professional Standards Committee scrutinised these; recommendations then went forward for Council to consider. Potential candidates could include persons of distinguished service to information science, ex-Presidents, and retired distinguished Fellows.

Honorary Fellowships could not be awarded to serving members of Council. An exception to this process was made as the IIS was wound up when the three immediate Past Presidents were asked to consider which Fellows on Council should be elevated to Honorary Fellowship.

Honorary Fellows could use the post nominals:  HonFIInfSci.

The first Honorary Fellowships were awarded in 1976 to five stalwarts of the Institute’s early years including Dr D.J. Campbell for services to the Institute and for establishing and editing the IIS Monograph series. Those presented at the last AGM in 2001 were: Adrian Dale, a consultant in information and knowledge management and editor of JIS, Prof Subbiah Arunchalam, a Distinguished Fellow in the M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation; Brian Clifford, Head of Learning and Research Support at Leeds University; and Doug Veal – a specialist in document and information management and IIS champion. The ‘winding up’ Honorary Fellows in 2002 were: Christine Baker, Administrator of UKOLUG; Peter Enser, Past President; Sandra Ward, Past President and Keith Webster, Honorary Secretary, all for services to the IIS.

List of Honorary Fellows

1975 Honorary Fellowships introduced
1976 Dr D.J. Campbell



For services to the IIS and for establishing and editing the IIS Monograph series.
Mr A. Gordon-Foster


For services to the IIS and information science.


Mr A.H. Holloway


For services to the IIS and information science.


Dr H.T. Hookway


For services to the IIS and information science.


Mr J.S.P. Paton


For services to the IIS and information science.
Miss I.M. Slade For services to the IIS and information science.
1977 Mr B.C. Brookes


For research towards the formulation of a science of information.
Professor D.W. Cleverdon For fundamental work on information retrieval and evaluation measures.
Mr J.C. Gray


For major contributions to establishing a national policy for information work network and for deployment of research funds.
Mr M. Hyams


For establishing a comprehensive patents documentation system leading to the creation of other information databases.
Mr E. Hyde


For fundamental work in evolving a system to record two-dimensional chemical structures in linear form for computer storage and retrieval (CROSSBOW).

For the creation and development of chemical information science courses and his development of the field internationally.

Professor W.L. Saunders


For books and papers of the highest quality on his wide experience of information work and development of courses in information science.
Professor B.C. Vickery


For publishing books and papers of the highest quality from his experience of information work through his career.
Mr L. Wilson For developing Aslib and its services to their present standard and worldwide repute.
1978 No information available.
1979 No information available.
1980 No information available.
1981 No information available.
1982 Alan Gilchrist For his service and contribution to the Institute on Council and Publications Committee, and his editorship of the Journal of Information Science.
1983 No information available.
1984 No information available.
1985 Angela Haygarth-Jackson Past-President and for her significant contribution to the IIS and the development of leading information services at ICI Pharmaceuticals.
Michael Aldrich President and innovator in speciality data processing techniques and processes, including large scale data capture, real-time minicomputers and networks, handprint data capture and voice response systems.
Sir Robert Clayton


President Elect and a renowned electronics engineer, notable in the area of defence and industrial electronics.
Martha Williams For distinguished contributions to information science.
1986 Marino Saksida A leading information scientist for the European Space Agency and visionary on the human dimension of information science.
1987 No information available.
1988 No information available.
1989 Eugene Garfield
Peter Laister IIS President Elect
1990 Michael Hill For services to IIS and to science and technology as head of the Science Reference Library, President of the Federation for Information and Documentation Congress and IIS Vice President.
Professor Peter Canisius
Jacques Tocatlian In recognition of his contribution to UNESCO and the development of information and documentation throughout the world.
1991 Dr Ana Marie Correia In recognition of her key role in the development of Information Science in Portugal, including the design of training courses and work on information services for industry.
1992 Brenda White For services to information science and the IIS as Chair of Council, President and her work on several Committees.
1993 Professor Tom Wilson In recognition of his contribution to information science particularly through introducing social science techniques to the study of information needs and his espousal of the concept of information management.

For a significant contribution to both information science and the Institute and current President.

Martin White For services to the Institute as the Founder Editor of Inform, acting as Chairman of Council and as President, and representing the Institute on a wide range of external Committees.
1994 Professor Robert Bottle For his work in establishing information science as an academic discipline and services to IIS Council and Professional Standards and Development Committee.
Russell Bowden


For services to librarianship and information science and for his contribution to the work of the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA).
Sarah Carter


For her contribution as the first Executive Secretary of IIS, creating its administrative support structure and for representing IIS at many levels.
Dr Brian Lang For his contribution to policy making in library and information science in the UK; Past-President of IIS.
1995 Bêla Hatvany For services to information science and work on the IIS vision and Strategy. IIS President.
1996 Only Fellows appointed.
1997 Charles Oppenheim For his critical contribution to strategy and services for the IIS and to information science, particularly in the field of intellectual property.
1998 Professor Michael Lynch For theoretical and practical contributions to information science and extending the use of information systems to chemical and textual data.
Susan Hill For services to the IIS on several committees and to the British Library.
Tom Aitchison For services to information science and for being a key player in the formation of INSPEC. IIS President.
1999 Only Fellows appointed.
2000 Peter Brophy Past President, for services to the IIS and information science research.
2001 Adrian Dale For his editorship of the Journal of Information Science, including the creation of its Dispatches column.
Professor Subbiah Arunchalam For his research into scientometrics and information access.
Brian Clifford For his services to IIS including Editor of Inform, Chair of Council and Past-President.
Doug Veal For his service to IIS for over 20 years, including as a Member of Council, Chair of Publications Committee, and his work to create the Tony Strix award with which he is still involved.
2002 Christine Baker For distinguished services to the IIS and UKOLUG.
Peter Enser President, for considerable services to the IIS, leading it through the merger with the LA.
Sandra Ward For services to the IIS as President, Council Member, and Chair of Publications Committee and for the promotion of information services in industry.
Keith Webster For distinguished services to the IIS, including his role as Honorary Secretary.

In the merger discussions it was agreed that Honorary Fellows became Honorary Fellows of CILIP when the merger took place.






  1. Inform (1987), 97, 4

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