TRANSITIONAL-GENEALOGISTS-FORUM-L ArchivesArchiver > TRANSITIONAL-GENEALOGISTS-FORUM > 2008-02 > 1202740401
From: "Mary E. Petty - Heirlines, Inc" <>
Subject: Re: [TGF] Mary Petty -atransitional-genealogist'sviewpointonProfessional Genealogy
Date: Mon, 11 Feb 2008 07:33:21 -0700
The wonderful thing about language is that it is alive and always changing by use. I suspect we are experiencing such an evolution and revolution in Professional Genealogy as a profession and an industry. Change starts somewhere and then moves across the globe. And that may be why, so many are debating these definitions and interpretations. We are living this change and know it has already happened for some of us.
In my lifetime I have learned that the route to a professional practice in genealogy is way more than "your G'ma's Saturday afternoon pedigree chart activity with tombstone rubbings". When Jim began his career path in 1964 and got his degree in history in 1972 and his degree in genealogy and his first Job with a Professional Genealogy Company in 1973, that was way before APG was even organized. A lot of water has flowed under the bridge since then. And I suspect we have only seen the beginnings of the flood that is to come.
I have included in this posting a very lengthy quote from Wikipedia (Industry and Profession) and your posting, Elizabeth, plus some personal comments. The following is for those that are interested in Professional Genealogy and practice as a professionally designation. It is kind of fun to see just where all this debate is going because there are not just the classical professions anymore Even Divinity, Medicine and Law have had to give way to growth in the word "profession". I am also fascinated by the modern use of the word Industry as well and concur wholeheartedly.
I see Professional Genealogy Research Services in all of these definitions from Elizabeth's Posting:
_Compact Oxford English Dictionary_
Origin: Latin industria ‘diligence’
2 a particular branch of economic or commercial activity.
3 hard work.
1 a paid occupation, especially one involving training and a formal qualification.
2 a body of people engaged in a profession.
_American Heritage Dictionary_
5 Energetic devotion to a task or an endeavor; diligence: demonstrated great
intelligence and industry as a prosecutor.
1 An occupation or career: "One of the highest compliments a child can pay a
parent is to choose his or her profession" (Joan Nathan).
2 An occupation, such as law, medicine, or engineering, that requires
considerable training and specialized study.
3 The body of qualified persons in an occupation or field: members of the
4 An act or instance of professing; a declaration.
"Any branch of trade, business, production, or manufacture; as, the paper
industry, the motion-picture industry.
"A vocation or occupation requiring advanced training in some liberal art or
science, and usually involving mental rather than manual work, as teaching,
engineering, writing, etc.: especially, medicine, law, or theology."
And from our friend, the Internet, I found the following which I see first hand on a daily basis.
>From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Industry (from Latin industrius, "diligent, industrious"), is the segment of economy concerned with the production of goods and services. Industry began in its present form during the 1800s, aided by technological advances, and has continued to develop into new types and sectors to this day. Many developed countries (for example the UK, the U.S., and Canada) and many developing/semi-developed countries (People's Republic of China, India etc.) depend significantly on industry. Industries, the countries they reside in, and the economies of those countries are interlinked in a complex web of interdependence.
There are four key sectors of industry: the primary sector, largely raw material extraction industries such as mining and farming; the secondary sector, involving refining and manufacturing; the tertiary sector, which deals with services (such as law and medicine) and distribution of manufactured goods; and the quaternary sector, a relatively new type of industry focusing on technological research, design and development.
>From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This article is about work professions. For religious profession, see Profession (religious).
A profession is an occupation, vocation or career where specialized knowledge of a subject, field, or science is applied. It is usually applied to occupations that involve prolonged academic training and a formal qualification. It is axiomatic that "professional activity involves systematic knowledge and proficiency." Professions are usually regulated by professional bodies that may set examinations of competence, act as a licensing authority for practitioners, and enforce adherence to an ethical code of practice.
1 Examples of the professions
2 Formation of a profession
5 Status and prestige
8 Gender inequality
9 Racial inequality
10 Characteristics of a profession
11 See also
 Examples of the professions
Professions include, for example: Doctors/Surgeons, Lawyers, Engineers, Logisticians, Librarians, Judges, Pharmacists, Environmental Health Officers, Nurses, Police Officers, Military Officers, Professors, Bishops, priests, Dentists, Architects, Surveyors, Accountants, and most other specialised technical occupations. "Doctors, nurses, lawyers, psychologists, and public accountants are some examples of professions." "Some occupations that usually would be described as “professions”: dentist...architect, teacher"
 Formation of a profession
A profession arises when any trade or occupation transforms itself through "the development of formal qualifications based upon education and examinations, the emergence of regulatory bodies with powers to admit and discipline members, and some degree of monopoly rights."
The process by which a profession arises from a trade or occupation is often termed professionalization and has been described as one, "starting with the establishment of the activity as a full-time occupation, progressing through the establishment of training schools and university links, the formation of a professional organization, and the struggle to gain legal support for exclusion, and culminating with the formation of a formal code of ethics."
An important example of a profession is teaching.
Regulation enforced by statute distinguishes a profession from other occupations represented by trade groups who aspire to professional status for their members.. In all countries, professions have their regulatory or professional bodies, whose function is to define, promote, oversee, support and regulate the affairs of its members. For some professions there may be several such bodies. 
Professions tend to be autonomous, which means they have a high degree of control of their own affairs: "professionals are autonomous insofar as they can make independent judgments about their work" This usually means "the freedom to exercise their professional judgement." However, it has other meanings. "Professional autonomy is often described as a claim of professionals that has to serve primarily their own interests...this professional autonomy can only be maintained if members of the profession subject their activities and decisions to a critical evaluation by other members of the profession " The concept of autonomy can therefore be seen to embrace not only judgement, but also self-interest and a continuous process of critical evaluation of ethics and procedures from within the profession itself.
 Status and prestige
Professions enjoy a high social status, regard and esteem   conferred upon them by society. This high esteem arises primarily from the higher social function of their work, which is regarded as vital to society as a whole and thus of having a special and valuable nature. All professions involve technical, specialised and highly skilled work often referred to as "professional expertise."   Training for this work involves obtaining degrees and professional qualifications (see Licensure) without which entry to the profession is barred (occupational closure). Training also requires regular updating of skills. (see continuing education)
All professions have power.  This power is used to control its own members, and also its area of expertise and interests. A profession tends to dominate, police and protect its area of expertise and the conduct of its members, and exercises a dominating influence over its entire field which means that professions can act monopolist,  rebuffing competition from ancillary trades and occupations, as well as subordinating and controlling lesser but related trades.  A profession is characterised by the power and high prestige it has in society as a whole. It is the power, prestige and value that society confers upon a profession that more clearly defines it. This is why Judges, Lawyers, Clerics, and Medical personnel enjoy this high social status and are regarded as true professionals.
Jesus and the doctors of the Faith,
by the entourage of Giuseppe RiberaClassically, there were only three professions: Divinity, Medicine, and Law. The main milestones which mark an occupation being identified as a profession are:
It became a full-time occupation;
The first training school was established;
The first university school was established;
The first local association was established;
The first national association was established;
The codes of professional ethics were introduced;
State licencing laws were established.
The ranking of established professions in the United States based on the above milestones shows Medicine first, followed by Law, Dentistry, Civil Engineering, Logistics, Architecture and Accounting. With the rise of technology and occupational specialization in the 19th century, other bodies began to claim professional status: Pharmacy, Logistics, Veterinary Medicine, Nursing, Teaching, Librarianship, Optometry and Social Work, all of which could claim to be professions by 1900 using these milestones.
Just as some professions rise in status and power through various stages, so others may decline. This is characterized by the red cloaks of bishops giving way to the black cloaks of lawyers and then to the white cloaks of doctors. With the church having receded in its role in western society, the remaining classical professions (law and medicine) are both noted by many as requiring not just study to enter, but extensive study and accreditation above and beyond simply getting a university degree. Accordingly more recently-formalized disciplines, such as architecture, which now have equally-long periods of study associated with them, and which are becoming considered as their equal.
Although professions enjoy high status and public prestige, all professionals do not earn the same high salaries. There are hidden inequalities even within professions.
 Gender inequality
Even in the professions well-qualified women do not get the same pay as men. "There is a 15 per cent pay gap between men and women across Europe. The situation is particularly bad in Britain. A report by the Women and Work Commission last year found that women in full-time work are earning 17 per cent less than men on average...significant numbers of women enter professions such as the law and medicine every year. They are increasingly well represented as heads of professional bodies and national arts organisations. Overall, since 1975, the pay gap has narrowed by 12 percentage points."
Although In Britain, "the fulltime gender pay gap has shrunk in the past 30 years, it is still 17%, while for part-time work it is stuck at a shameful 40%....all this is happening when, at school and college, women are outshining men. In the medical and legal professions there has been a 'genderquake,'" which means these professions are gradually becoming female-dominated. Yet their pay continues to lag behind that of their male colleagues.
This situation is by no means limited to Law and Medicine. "Research from the profession's leading body, the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), has discovered that there is a 23% pay gap between men and women in senior HR positions. This all the more embarrassing because HR is considered a women's profession....and (although) a professional qualification is a hallmark of equality...in practice, some professionals are better rewarded than others, and that the better rewarded tend to be men. This is not solely because men are more likely to reach the top of their professions. Gender gaps have been found in the starting salaries of newly qualified solicitors. And there are segregated professions, and occupations."
 Racial inequality
Equally qualified blacks get paid less than equivalent whites. "the percentage difference in earnings between Blacks and Whites was smallest (5%) in the lowest-paid occupations and greatest in the highest-paid occupations...black dentists and physicians earned 80 cents for every dollar earned by their White colleagues. Black lawyers earned 79 cents for every dollar earned by White lawyers...black men have made inroads into the most highly paid occupations, but once they get there, they find they still don't earn as much as equally qualified White men."
 Characteristics of a profession
The list of characteristics that follows is extensive, but does not claim to include every characteristic that has ever been attributed to professions, nor do all of these features apply to every profession:
Skill based on theoretical knowledge: Professionals are assumed to have extensive theoretical knowledge (e.g. medicine, law, scripture or engineering) and to possess skills based on that knowledge that they are able to apply in practice.
Professional association: Professions usually have professional bodies organized by their members, which are intended to enhance the status of their members and have carefully controlled entrance requirements.
Extensive period of education: The most prestigious professions usually require at least three years at university.
Testing of competence: Before being admitted to membership of a professional body, there is usually a requirement to pass prescribed examinations that are based on mainly theoretical knowledge.
Institutional training: In addition to examinations, there is usually a requirement for a long period of institutionalized training where aspiring professionals acquire specified practical experience in some sort of trainee role before being recognized as a full member of a professional body. Continuous upgrading of skills through professional development is also mandatory these days.
Licenced practitioners: Professions seek to establish a register or membership so that only those individuals so licenced are recognized as bona fide.
Work autonomy: Professionals tend to retain control over their work, even when they are employed outside the profession in commercial or public organizations. They have also gained control over their own theoretical knowledge.
Code of professional conduct or ethics: Professional bodies usually have codes of conduct or ethics for their members and disciplinary procedures for those who infringe the rules.
Self-regulation: Professional bodies tend to insist that they should be self-regulating and independent from government. Professions tend to be policed and regulated by senior, respected practitioners and the most highly qualified members of the profession.
Public service and altruism: The earning of fees for services rendered can be defended because they are provided in the public interest, e.g. the work of doctors contributes to public health.
Exclusion, monopoly and legal recognition: Professions tend to exclude those who have not met their requirements and joined the appropriate professional body. This is often termed professional closure, and seeks to bar entry for the unqualified and to sanction or expel incompetent members.
Control of remuneration and advertising: Where levels of remuneration are determined by government, professional bodies are active in negotiating (usually advantageous) remuneration packages for their members. Some professions set standard scale fees, but government advocacy of competition means that these are no longer generally enforced.
High status and rewards: The most successful professions achieve high status, public prestige and rewards for their members. Some of the factors included in this list contribute to such success.
Individual clients: Many professions have individual fee-paying clients. For example, in accountancy, "the profession" usually refers to accountants who have individual and corporate clients, rather than accountants who are employees of organizations.
Middle-class occupations: Traditionally many professions have been viewed as 'respectable' occupations for middle and upper classes..
Male-dominated: The highest status professions tend to be male dominated. For example, the proportion of women in school-teaching has increased as its status has declined, and women are now being admitted to the priesthood while its status has declined relative to other professions. Similar arguments apply to race and class: ethnic groups and working-class people are no less disadvantaged in most professions than they are in society generally.
Offer reassurance: Professionals are able to offer reassurance to their clients that although there appear to be problems, everything is normal or being dealt with properly, and this reassurance may be offered rather than solutions to particular problems. For example, sick people may be reassured that they will probably get better in a few days.
Ritual: Church ritual, and the Court procedure are obviously ritualistic.
Legitimacy: Professions have clear legal authority over some activities (e.g. certifying the insane) but are also seen as adding legitimacy to awide range of related activities.
Inaccessible body of knowledge: In some professions, the body of knowledge is relatively inaccessible to the uninitiated. Medicine and law are typically not school subjects and have separate faculties and even separate libraries at universities.
Indeterminacy of knowledge: Professional knowledge contains elements that escape being mastered and communicated in the form of rules and can only be acquired through experience.
Mobility: The skill knowledge and authority of professionals belongs to the professionals as individuals, not the organizations for which they work. Professionals are therefore relatively mobile in employment opportunities as they can move to other employers and take their talents with them. Standardization of professional training and procedures enhances this mobility..
 See also
P.J. Corfield, Power and the Professions in Britain, 1700-1850, Routledge, London, 1995
Yves Dezalay and David Sugarman, Professional Competition and Professional Power, Routledge, 1995, ISBN 0203977211
Eliot Freidson, Professional Powers: A Study of the Institutionalization of Formal Knowledge, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1986, ISBN 0-226-26225-1
Joseph M. Jacob, Doctors and Rules: A Sociology of Professional Values, Transaction Publishers, New Brunswick and London, 1999
Jonathan Montgomery, Medicine, Accountability, and Professionalism, 1989
^ Oxford English Dictionary, Second Edition (Oxford University Press, 1989)
^ http://www.ethical-perspectives.be/page.php?LAN=E&FILE=ep_detail&ID=100&TID=909 Asa Kasher, Professional Ethics and Collective Professional Autonomy A Conceptual Analysis, Ethical Perspectives, 12/1 (March - 2005), pp.67-97
^ http://www.cs.nott.ac.uk/~nhn/G52GRP/LectureNotes/lecture05-4up.pdf What is a Profession?
^ Alan Bullock & Stephen Trombley, The New Fontana Dictionary of Modern Thought, London: Harper-Collins, 1999, p.689
^ http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0254/is_4_58/ai_58496769 Jennifer Roberts & Michael Dietrich, Conceptualizing Professionalism: Why Economics Needs Sociology, The American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Oct, 1999
^ Perks, R.W.(1993): Accounting and Society. Chapman & Hall (London); ISBN 0412473305. p.2
^ http://www.paradigm-redshift.com/busprof.htm List of professional bodies in the UK
^ Bayles, Michael D. Professional Ethics. Belmont, California: Wadsworth, 1981
^ http://www.wma.net/e/policy/a21.htm The World Medical Association Declaration of Madrid on Professional Autonomy and Self-Regulation, 1987
^ http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/klu/meta/2000/00000021/00000005/00274496 Hoogland J. & Jochemsen H., Professional Autonomy and the Normative Structure of Medical Practice, Theoretical Medicine, 21.5, September 2000 , pp.457-475
^ http://126.96.36.199/search?q=cache:3bUoc0ranJ0J:www.usca.edu/essays/vol62003/tinsley.pdf+professional+esteem&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=9&gl=uk Ron Tinsley & James C Hardy, Faculty Pressures and Professional Self-Esteem: Life in Texas Teacher Education.
^ http://www.rcpath.org/index.asp?PageID=28 Royal College of Pathologists, The role of the College and benefits of membership, 16 Dec 2005
^ http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/rsm/hsmr/2004/00000017/00000002/art00004 P C S Lian & A W Laing, The role of professional expertise in the purchasing of health services, Health Services Management Research, 17.2, 1 May 2004 , pp.110-120
^ http://www.teachingexpertise.com/articles/recognising-professional-expertise-in-science-education-1579 Derek Bell, Recognising professional expertise in science education,
^ Terence Johnson, Professions and Power, London: Heinemann, 1972
^ Gerald Larkin, Occupational Monopoly and Modern Medicine, London: Tavistock, 1983
^ Peter E S Freund, & Meredith B McGuire, Health Illness and the Social Body A Critical Sociology, New Jersey, USA: Prentice Hall, 1995, p.211
^ Perks, R.W.(1993): Accounting and Society. Chapman & Hall (London); ISBN 0412473305. p.2
^ Perks, R.W.(1993): Accounting and Society. Chapman & Hall (London); ISBN 0412473305. p.2
^ Perks, R.W.(1993): Accounting and Society. Chapman & Hall (London); ISBN 0412473305. p.3
^ Buckley, J.W. & Buckley, M.H. (1974): The Accounting Profession. Melville, Los Angeles. Quoted by Perks, p.4
^ Zola, I.K. (1977): Healthism and disabling medicalization. Marion Boyars Publishers, New York. Quoted by Perks, p.4
^ Holm, Ivar (2006). Ideas and Beliefs in Architecture and Industrial design: How attitudes, orientations and underlying assumptions shape the built environment. Oslo School of Architecture and Design. ISBN 8254701741.
^ http://comment.independent.co.uk/leading_articles/article2296807.ece Bridge the pay gap, it is outdated discrimination, The Independent, 23 February 2007
^ http://society.guardian.co.uk/comment/column/0,,1643134,00.html Malcolm Dean, "Ending inequality is a work in progress", The Guardian, November 16, 2005
^ http://jobsadvice.guardian.co.uk/officehours/story/0,,1319028,00.html Bill Saunders, Pay differentials, The Guardian, October 4, 2004.
^ http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1355/is_12_100/ai_77931191/ Anon, Despite Rising to top Professions, Black Men still don't earn top Pay, Jet, Sept 3, 2001
^ Perks, p.6-11
^ Perks, p.11
^ Perks, pgs. 12-14
Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Profession"
Mary E. Petty, B.A.
Ancestors are the People of History. Do you know who yours are?<br><br>Let the Professionals at HEIRLINES Family History & Genealogy find your ancestry!
1-800-570-4049 ▪ www.heirlines.com ▪ PO Box 893 ▪ Salt Lake City, UT 84110
From: [mailto:] On Behalf Of
Sent: Sunday, February 10, 2008 12:20 AM
Subject: Re: [TGF] Mary Petty - atransitional-genealogist'sviewpointonProfessional Genealogy
> My father in law and brother in law are both MD and refer to their
> industry as Medicine. They also call it a profession.
Mary, I would say that I'll match your two MDs and raise you a few other
family professionals in the various fields we've all talked about today--but
I would suspect you could match those as well and we'd end up with a draw.
When you say that your family MDs "refer to their industry as Medicine," are
you saying they refer to their medical practice as an "industry." There's a
difference in the way those words are phrased.
There is, indeed, an industry side to medicine itself--insurance companies,
hospitals, drug manufacturers, etc.--that doctors are intimately involved
in; but the doctors (and nurses) I know still draw a very definite line
between the production/supply side and their own profession.
Similarly, there is a business or commercial side of education. Colleges and
universities have a significant business operation underpinning the
educational process. Still, outside the administrative offices of those
institutions, the practitioners of the learned fields don't refer to their
activity as an industry. They may study industry, but they, themselves, are
>From the many postings you, Jim, and Jeanette have made on APG-L, I sense
you are trying very hard to instill the idea that genealogy is a
*business*--not just a hobby or something someone does once or twice a week
for pin money with little concept of standards or professionalism. I commend
you for that. I totally agree with you that a successful professional
practice has to be underpinned by not only expertise in the discipline but
also sound business practices. Otherwise, the professional practice won't
survive economically. But the fact that a professional must know sound
business practices doesn't turn the professional practice into an industry.
(Obviously, I'll still stick with the distinctions observed by Webster and
the OED :).
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