Institutionalizing

You’ve made a case for resources and institutional buy-in, but there are some strategies you may consider for institutionalizing this work as central to your organization.
  • Expand core and ongoing work of organization to include civic data: Consider service areas that can be framed as inclusive of civic data work. For example, public and academic libraries alike have instructional services that help library users to identify and access information resources and build information literacy skills. Defining this service area as inclusive of data literacy and building data resources into discovery sessions can help to embed civic data into your organization’s work. Or perhaps your government documents program can be broadened to focus on local government information, in addition to the federal depository program.
  • Discuss creating operations-funded staff positions, with either full or partial responsibility for civic/open data: Consider your organization's priorities (and check out our Library Roles section) when defining the positions.
  • Rewrite positions to include civic data: If civic data engagement is being led by individuals in your library who do not have the work expressly written in their job positions, consider formalizing and defining positions to include this work. This will help to ensure that civic data work persists, even if there is employee turnover.
  • Advocate for grant funded positions to become to permanent lines in your organization. Make a case for temporary resources to be turned into sustaining ones and use the reference and outreach data you record to do so.
  • Connect to institutions that are long-living and resourced: Within your ecosystem, there may be players that are deeply entrenched and act as sustained partners. Consider finding them to ensure your work is similarly sustained.