Update on the Society’s Decadal Strategic Planning

In December 2017, we shared with you GSA leadership’s strategic planning effort to define bold and compelling strategic goals to guide the Society over the next decade. This 18-month commitment, which began in fall 2017, involves a three-tier planning process of mission- and validation-planning phases and a final implementation plan. We write to you today to provide an update on the strategic planning process to date.

We have made marked progress in the decadal strategic planning over this past year. Multiple strategies were employed by leadership for the 1st phase of the planning process — Mission Planning — in order to knowledgeably articulate the Society’s distinguishing characteristics, assess evolving member needs and opportunities, identify critical issues, and to define the next generation of guiding aspirations for the Society. A Strategic Planning Work Group composed of approximately two-dozen GSA members, including Councilors, Officers, student and early career professional members, Foundation members, senior staff at headquarters, among others, was established and met twice for ‘all hands on-deck’ two-day meetings. The different constituents of the Society were surveyed electronically and town-hall meetings were convened at each of the 2018 Section Meetings. The full Council’s voice was integrated into the mission-planning phase during a third retreat in early May, 2018.  The Mission-Planning activities have defined a set of visionary aspirations that speak to GSA’s long-standing commitment to high quality and high integrity science, the promotion of the geosciences both within the scientific community and broadly to the public and policy decision makers, as well as to the professional development of students and early career members.

In order to maintain momentum and assure continuity with the transition in leadership, a core strategic planning group (including the Past and current President and President-Elect and Executive Director) is continuing these efforts through summer 2018 culminating in a mid-August retreat. At that time, the Strategic Planning Work Group will initiate the 2nd phase of the decadal strategic planning process — Validation Planning. Three task forces — Program Planning, Financial Planning, and Development Planning — will soon be populated with representatives of all constituents of the Society.  We will be reaching out to many of you to participate and we hope that you will consider joining us.

We are excited about the opportunities that GSA’s decadal-scale strategic planning is providing to build on the Society’s existing strengths and impart exciting new changes for the future.  Look for further updates as we continue on this path forward.

Montañez signature
Isabel Patricia Montañez
GSA President (2017-2018)

Gries signature
Robbie Rice Gries
GSA President (2018-2019)