ASERL Ahead: Strategic Directions for 2020-2023
Revised February 21, 2020
Approved by ASERL Board of Directors May 22, 2020
Affirmed Unanimously by ASERL Membership May 27, 2020
The Association of Southeastern Research Libraries (ASERL) is a healthy and strong membership organization comprising 37 research libraries located in 11 southeastern US states. ASERL is governed by a seven-member Board elected from its membership, and activities are coordinated from a central office of 2.66 FTE housed at Emory University in Atlanta. For more than 60 years, ASERL has provided excellent resource sharing programs and professional development opportunities for its members. Because ASERL provides outstanding value and is fully accountable to its members, ASERL library deans and directors place ASERL among their most important memberships. The connections between ASERL libraries’ staffs and programs are critical for success. By working together, ASERL members effectively address pressing issues for research libraries in the region.
STRATEGIC THEME ONE: CONTINUE TO PROMOTE INNOVATION AND HIGH-IMPACT PROGRAMS
ASERL will deliver innovative, high-impact programming to serve its membership, continuously monitor emerging issues within the profession, and develop new programming to keep libraries at the center of the educational and research missions of their universities.
1. Provide timely and convenient opportunities for deans and directors to collaboratively address strategic issues in the region
2. Provide relevant professional development programming and leadership development opportunities to nurture future leaders working in member libraries
3. Coordinate retention of legacy print collections in the region, and nationally with other partners
4. Ensure rapid and convenient user access to library content via enhanced resource sharing and through opportunities for member libraries to share special and unique content in new ways
STRATEGIC THEME TWO: A FOCUS ON DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION
ASERL will devote significant resources to develop programs to assist our members in becoming more welcoming and inclusive to patrons and employees from under-represented groups.
1. Assess members’ current activities to identify and share information about successful DEI-related library programming
2. Support our members’ efforts to identify and implement strategies to recruit and retain a more diverse workforce in their libraries
3. Host regional workshops, conferences, and other events to foster more equitable access to library information, services, programming, and spaces
STRATEGIC THEME THREE: FULLY ENGAGE MEMBER INSTITUTIONS
1. Implement a dean-to-dean mentoring and on-boarding process for new deans/directors
2. Ensure all meetings and events address important strategic issues, are interactive and content-rich
3. Provide alternate representatives with relevant information and ensure they are welcomed and ready to participate in membership meetings
4. Enhance interest group engagement by providing support and regular opportunities to disseminate and recognize their work
5. Communicate ASERL’s Value:
a. Develop and maintain concise reports articulating ROI on member investments in ASERL
b. Publish activity reports for each member library at least once per year
c. Develop talking points for deans/directors that focus on ROI stories
d. Draft news articles describing ASERL’s work to be shared through campus communication channels
STRATEGIC THEME FOUR: STRENGTHEN INFRASTRUCTURE
1. Improve tools for communicating / interacting with members
2. Implement Board-level policies defining the committees, groups or communities of practice that will be directly supported by ASERL staff, and the conditions necessary for diversification or expansion of program offerings, membership, or revenue
3. Identify measures of success for all areas of staff-supported programming, and report annually
4. Explore partnerships with other consortia to share new program development
The following was approved by ASERL’s Board of Directors on January 9, 2020.
ASERL advances southeastern research libraries by enabling collaboration, sharing knowledge, fostering innovation, and building community.
Forging alliances and supporting advances that keep libraries at the center of the educational and research mission of our universities.
1. We collaborate and foster collegiality and best practices among the research libraries of the southeast
2. We exceed expectations by building upon traditional strengths and responding to rapidly changing research technologies
3. We provide leadership for developing staff and programs to keep libraries at the core of teaching, technology, and research activities at our universities
4. We work collectively toward creating a more equitable and inclusive environment