Association of Research Libraries (ARL) member representatives and staff conducted the 176th Association Meeting via videoconferencing on May 12–14, 2020. This was the first virtual Association Meeting in ARL’s 88-year history.
The ARL Board of Directors met on Monday, May 11, before the Association Meeting. Peer-to-Peer Conversations on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 12 and 13, offered member representatives opportunities to discuss “Challenges and Opportunities for University Presses” and “Big Deal Cancellations in Context.” Association committees also met on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The meeting concluded on Thursday, May 14, with a plenary session for all member representatives. ARL President Lorraine Haricombe, University of Texas at Austin, convened the plenary session and introduced member representatives and interim representatives who are new to the Association. She also recognized member representatives who are retiring or stepping down this summer and remembered colleagues who have passed away since the Fall 2019 Association Meeting. Member representatives then participated in a “Strategic Priorities Workshop: Leading Out of the Crisis toward a New State of Research Libraries and Archives,” to help the Association set its priorities for the next one to two years.
The Plan Ahead Task Force will review the results of the Strategic Priorities Workshop as well as committee and member input on the workshop findings to develop forecasts and potential scenarios for the Board to consider during their July 2020 retreat. After the Board retreat, the task force will develop an Action Plan to present to the Board and then to the membership at the October 2020 Association Meeting.
The Member Engagement and Outreach Committee hosted the fifth annual ARL Film Festival—the Arlies—during the virtual Association Meeting. The Arlies festival highlights and shares videos developed by member institutions to increase knowledge and use of libraries, their spaces, services, collections, and expertise. This year there were 15 submissions, which member representatives viewed and voted on May 6–17. The 10 award winners were announced in the May 22 ARL News email.
About the Association of Research Libraries
The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 124 research libraries in Canada and the US whose mission is to advance research, learning, and scholarly communication. The Association fosters the open exchange of ideas and expertise, promotes equity and diversity, and pursues advocacy and public policy efforts that reflect the values of the library, scholarly, and higher education communities. ARL forges partnerships and catalyzes the collective efforts of research libraries to enable knowledge creation and to achieve enduring and barrier-free access to information. ARL is on the web at ARL.org.