DLF Review Update

An update on the DLF program review from consultant Joanne Kossuth:

I hope everyone is enjoying the summer—ideally some time off and nice weather! The review of the Digital Library Federation (DLF) is well underway, and I’d like to provide a progress update. Since February, I’ve been working with CLIR and DLF staff and the community in numerous ways, including:

  • conversing with the DLF working group leaders to gain a better understanding of what their groups do, where they think additional potential areas for collaboration and innovation lie, and how they’d like to see their initiatives evolve and grow over the next several years;
  • assessing and making recommendations on the program’s website, communication and collaboration platforms, and tools, based on feedback from the working groups, staff, and community members;
  • considering how to best continue expanding outreach and engaging the community in our ongoing efforts to ensure all voices are included and heard;
  • participating in the Learn@DLF and Forum program planning activities with staff and the Program Committee;
  • holding weekly virtual working sessions with the DLF team focused on the 2019 Forum in all its parts; and
  • working in partnership with CLIR and DLF staff to evaluate the program’s staffing needs.

It has been a busy time and the review work continues!

We’re looking forward to seeing many of you in Tampa this October at the Forum and Learn@DLF, and I’d welcome the opportunity to speak either one-on-one or in group conversations with you that week. DLF could not exist without its vibrant, dedicated community, and it’s vital I hear from you. The purpose of these conversations is to gather your input and hear your comments regarding DLF’s future direction.  

Based on the feedback to date from working groups and representatives from member institutions, we have developed a number of working ideas, and I’d like to hear from you on these, or any other thoughts you may have:

  • expanded year-round programming;
  • increased international focus, including stronger ties to events held by organizations with similar missions and goals;
  • more coherent integration with other CLIR initiatives, such as the Leading Change/Frye Leadership Institute, the Postdoctoral and Mellon Dissertation fellowship programs, and the Hidden Collections and Recordings at Risk projects; and
  • support for large collaborative projects under CLIR’s wider umbrella, such as the long-term sustainability of important community resources and projects beyond their initial funding phase; the risks facing collections and their caretakers in areas affected by climate change; advances in machine learning/artificial intelligence and attendant considerations; the need to thoughtfully, respectfully, and inclusively protect and ensure access to our collective cultural heritage.     

You can contact me anytime at joanne.kossuth [@] gmail.com, and I’m also looking forward to seeing many of you at the Forum in October. I’ll be available onsite all that week for those of you who would like to meet and talk in person; please book a meeting via this link (password Forum2019). Any discussions will be entirely confidential, unless we mutually agree otherwise, and I’m eager to converse with you about the exciting future of DLF.

-Joanne Kossuth


Joanne Kossuth is the founding director of 1Mountain Road and has served as dean of the CLIR/EDUCAUSE Leading Change Institute since 2012. She is working with CLIR to review and assess the Digital Library Federation as the program approaches its 25th year; the review will conclude in early 2020.

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