Mission and vision

People gathering around a table talking with a power point presentation on a screen in the background

At Arizona State University, we are building a new library for the 21st century – one that is as inspiring as it is welcoming, both an incubator of creativity and a monument to human complexity.

As new technologies, disciplines and opportunities for discovery continue to emerge, the learning and research needs of ASU students and faculty demand a library that is both agile and robust, community-centered and service-minded, imaginative and engaged, and equipped to support a growing and dynamic university that is driven by innovation.





Our mission

ASU Library is the gateway to the ASU educational enterprise and thus a critical partner in realizing the New American University mission, of which success is measured not by whom it excludes, but by whom it includes and how they succeed.

2020 - 2023 Strategic Priorities

A key gateway to Arizona State University’s research and knowledge enterprise, the ASU Library works to collaborate, educate and innovate across disciplines, communities and technologies, while leveraging key research, learning and engagement opportunities unique to ASU. A strong supporter of student success and a critical partner in realizing ASU’s mission of access, excellence and impact, the ASU Library is a space of potentiality, out of which many futures can be built and of which none are excluded. 

Below are selected accomplishments in key strategic priorities for the year 2020.


  Demonstrate leadership in academic excellence and accessibility


Enhance global impact
  • Launched a digital credentialing program to bolster student proficiency in essential academic library skills as part of a pilot general education curriculum series for all first-year students in ASU’s New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences.  Students utilizing this program program earned 11,018 badges in 2020.  
  • Provided support for faculty instructors in the area of copyright, licensing and open education to prepare them for the launch of the ASU Online Master of Computer Science degree as well as the Thunderbird Master of Applied Leadership program, both delivering courses to learners in China in the Mandarin language.
  • Fostered opportunities via specialized programming, events and communications to raise ASU community awareness of open access materials, principles and approaches to knowledge creation in an effort to make university research and resources globally and publicly accessible.
  • Sponsored and co-developed the international exhibition, Agnes Smedley: A Revolutionary Life, which opened in Shanghai, China, in May 2020, at the Museum of the Former Residence of Sun Yat-sen.
Communicate the value of the library
  • Approximately 15 stories in ASU News, the university’s main news channel, featured the ASU Library – new initiatives, programs, unit centers, collections and library spaces – in the year 2020. A feature story detailing the grand re-opening of Hayden Library was ASU News’ most-viewed story for the month of January 2020, receiving 11,258 total page views, over 4,000 more views than the second-most viewed story in the same month. “More than words: Acknowledging Indigenous land,” a feature story illustrating the library’s path toward crafting an Indigenous land statement, was among the top 10 most-viewed stories in July 2020.
  • Launched an educational podcast series about misinformation. Produced by the library’s Data Science and Analytics unit, “Misinfo Weekly” has received approximately 1,800 listens across 13 episodes focused on understanding misinformation in our time.
  • Expanded the ASU Library’s presence on social media to include unique voices from the Distinctive Collections unit and the Labriola National American Indian Data Center that serve to highlight library resources and services and connect users to them.
Foster student success
  • Embedded a team of librarians into a pilot general education curriculum series for all first-year students in ASU’s New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences.
  • Expanded home delivery service of library materials to ASU students residing outside of Maricopa County and into tribal communities, in addition to eliminating barriers to home delivery to selective non-Maricopa County locations.
  • Produced and distributed critical video messaging during the COVID-19 shift to online learning to reinforce the presence and accessibility of library support for students and the entire ASU community, which garnered more than 5,000 views on YouTube. These videos include: We’re Here for You, Library 101: An Introduction to the ASU Library, Researcher Support and Introduction to the ASU Library Map and Geospatial Hub.
  • Partnered with the University Technology Office to provide over 4,000 computing devices (laptops and hotspots) to students making the shift to remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic, in addition to partnering with Educational Outreach and Student Success and the Dean of Students’ Office to develop and implement consistent Community of Care protocols to promote and ensure a safe and healthy environment for students.
Expand open and affordable course materials
  • Collaborated with ASU Knowledge Enterprise and the Biodesign Institute to support the university’s rollout of Lab Archives as a campus-wide option for electronic research notebooks.
  • Curated openly accessible resources for the newly launched ASU for You platform.
  • Significantly increased the purchase of e-books with multiple seat licenses for courses.
Build capacity through enhanced funding models


  Establish national standing in academic quality and impact of colleges and schools in every field.


Expand capacity for open research data
  • Launched ASU GeoData, a platform designed to help ASU researchers navigate the dynamic geospatial data landscape, through the library’s Map and Geospatial Hub.
  • Deployed the research data management platform Dataverse to help ASU researchers share, store, preserve, cite, explore and make research accessible and discoverable.
  • Collaborated with ASU Knowledge Enterprise and the Biodesign Institute to support the university’s rollout of Lab Archives as a campus-wide option for electronic research notebooks.
Grow benchmarking and strategy capabilities
  • Completed major analysis of Association of Research Libraries (ARL) statistics benchmarking against ARL peers.
  • Developed new analyses and visualizations to inform and communicate budget allocations for collections.
  • Enhanced and updated the ASU Library’s statistics portal, By the Numbers, to help users, partners and constituents understand library usage, holdings, spaces, instruction and overall expenditures.
Partner to enhance national reputation
  • Partnered with the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies to pilot new publishing platforms.
  • Developed a new partnership with the Senate Historical Office in conjunction with the Senator John S. McCain Papers Project.
  • Contributed to a global open education event, March Mammal Madness, by curating what has become one of the most-viewed library guides in the world – with over 450,000 views is among the top 1.74% globally – connecting students and educators at all levels to open access resources.


  Establish ASU as a leading global center for interdisciplinary research, discover and development by 2025.


Discovery of ASU research
Improve access to ASU-hosted content

Develop and pilot enhancements to ASU Library discovery environments to improve the online user experience and access to ASU Library hosted information, based on user community needs.

  • Executed a holistic redesign of ASU’s repository system by developing three distinct and interconnected repositories linking research, collections and data in order to better preserve and share scholarship and research.
  • Enhanced discoverability of ASU resources through the development of metadata application profiles and additional metadata for repository records, in addition to initiating linked data functionality.
Expand our networks

Build new relationships with faculty, researchers and administrators across our campuses and programs, including ASU offices around the world to integrate ASU Library services into new and nascent ASU programs.

  • Established a partnership with the Institute for Humanities Research to embed librarians into Humanities Lab courses, which provide students opportunities to engage in hands-on research tackling social challenges. In 2020 the first year of this partnerhsip, 11 librarians were embedded into Humanities Lab courses.
  • Collaborated with the Institute for Social Science Research to embed a team of social science librarians into their seed grant initiative.
  • Created NatureMaker, an active learning library devoted to sustainable design innovation, in collaboration with the ASU Biomimicry Center.


  Enhance our local impact and social embeddedness.


Space as learning engagement
  • Developed openly accessible collections with targeted audiences on each campus through the Future of Print initiative. A full review of project highlights is available online.
  • Made available through the Hayden Library renovation 10 gender neutral restrooms, two wellness/lactation rooms, one interfaith reflection room and one ablution room.
  • Created a research commons space on level 3 of the renovated Hayden Library in order to leverage and connect multiple specialized library units with access to experts, technologies, support services and research opportunities in the areas of data science, geographic information system (GIS) modeling and maker culture.
Promote inclusion
  • Published and disseminated the library’s Indigenous Land Acknowledgement, resulting in widespread feedback and inquiries from other units/areas wanting to create their own.
  • Focused digitization and processing efforts on amplifying marginalized voices through uncovering hidden diverse archival collections.
  • Worked across teams to gather information about education for those incarcerated within the Arizona Department of Corrections, while making key contacts with librarians in prison libraries and developing a plan to provide open educational resources to learners with limited resources.
  • Initiated a process to eliminate and replace the Library of Congress subject heading “Illegal Aliens” with “Undocumented Immigrant” in an effort to reduce harm to marginalized communities.
Engage with our communities
  • Produced a toolkit for libraries to use in developing small community-engaged open stack browsing collections.
  • Hosted 20 in-person community archiving workshops and more than 20 online events through the ASU Library’s Community-Driven Archives Initiative, focused on documenting family and community history and oral history.
  • Facilitated summer enrichment programs for high schoolers with a focus on technology literacy, as part of the TRIO Upward Bound program, designed to improve pre-college academic performance and student motivation.
  • Created personal protective equipment for frontline workers in the health care industry and worked to reduce N95 mask waste in the fitting process during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Collaborated with the ASU Knowledge Exchange for Resilience (KER) working with local partners Crisis Network and Maricopa County United Way to better understand homelessness in Maricopa County as part of the “Actionable Homelessness Data Plan” Homeless Management Information System.
  • Developed and produced a local analytics and visualization project designed to study pedestrian accidents.