In my view, raising dues is not a sustainable answer.
- We cannot become/remain solvent by continually raising the member-dues rate(s).
- Membership demographics suggest that ALA will see a rapid decline over the next several years (as the late 1960s and 1970s membership boom retires out)
- More revenue-producing educational programs and more high-quality publications (plus promotional outreach) are where our efforts must go.
- In addition to increasing possible program and publications revenue, ALA leadership and membership really need to revisit the definition of the Association and each Division and Round Table.
ALA (and each Division/Round Table individually) leadership and membership need to revisit and answer the questions below:
- What is ALA? (and each Division/Round Table individually?)
- Or what does ALA (and each Division/Round Table individually) Do?
- Does the differentiation created by [each Division/Round Table individually] still make sense?
Some other questions along the same lines:
- Is there anything we (ALA or Divisions/Round Tables) can stop doing?
- What is/are our core focus/foci and what efforts that must continue?
- what must we discontinue in order to be able to keep covering our core efforts?
If we cannot define each Division/Round Table individually enough to answer the above questions, should we explore merger options? There is a really neat list of ALA units and what they focus upon on ALA Connect, check out ALA Connect by Category.
I’ve tossed a lot of questions out there for consideration — I wish I had answers to go with them… Ideas welcome!