2010 - 2011 Goals, Strategies, and Objectives

1. Determine ways in which we can intentionally focus as a section on the identification, exploration, and promotion of emerging technologies in reference and user services.

MARS has a new name—MARS:  Emerging Technologies in Reference Section—and a new statement of objectives.  These changes usher in an exciting time for MARS, as we realign our section activities explicitly around the concept of emerging technologies.   While MARS has always been about technology, our new name and charge refine our mission as one focusing on emerging technologies.  Our objective for this year is to define “emerging” and determine how the concept should guide our work . 

2. Develop mechanisms for virtual participation.

RUSA continues to explore possibilities for virtual participation, and many MARS committees have found that their work can be done virtually.  Now our objective is to identify tools, methods and procedures that enable virtual participation.   Tools should be free or low cost; methods and procedures need to ensure that committee meetings are open to all.
 

3. Given our newly revised charge, clarify and define our place within RUSA.

MARS occupies a unique position within RUSA.  Especially given our new name and charge, this position needs to be clarified.  We should determine how MARS will interact with other sections, since emerging technologies are relevant to all RUSA sections, and what will distinguish us from other sections whose work may overlap with ours.
 

4. Recruit more members and more active participation from current members.

MARS remains a strong section but has lost membership recently, and needs to focus on recruitment.  Our appeal lies in our focus specifically on new technologies.   We need to reach out to technology-minded public services librarians in all types of libraries and market what we can offer to them.  

5. Offer increased continuing education opportunities, such as webinars.

RUSA and MARS are increasingly emphasizing continuing education.  MARS offers excellent conference programs and discussion groups; with the help of RUSA, we should consider whether these can be turned into webinars or other continuing education opportunities.
 

6.  Examine organizational structure, and ensure that all committees are engaged in relevant projects.

The organizational structure of the section should adapt in order to respond quickly to emerging technologies.  We should examine our current structure and consider whether new structures, such as interest groups, might serve our needs.