2016 Strategic Planning

In 2016, the EDUCAUSE board is developing an ambitious but achievable five-year strategic plan for EDUCAUSE.

We are using this structured opportunity to listen to our members and to collect a broad array of insights and advice from peers, community leaders, stakeholders, and other experts to ensure a thriving future for EDUCAUSE.

In every way, we are committed to a planning exercise that results in a vibrant, inspirational planning document, not one that gathers dust on a shelf or rests in a never-opened digital archive. In other words, we are striving for a process that is expeditious, authentic, practical and aspirational:

  • We will confirm the mission, interpreting it for today.
  • We will invite consideration of far future issues, opportunities, and trends through our environmental scan, but the plan will be constructed around a five-year horizon.
  • Feedback from a broad range of stakeholders will inform our planning, but instead of appointing an independent strategic planning committee, the duly elected EDUCAUSE board will represent the membership in planning activities.
  • The EDUCAUSE executive team and senior staff will synthesize the results of the board discussion of the environmental scan into a draft plan for board review and approval.

For more details on our process, we invite you to read our strategic planning approach.


Strategic Plan Timeline


Updates and Accomplishments


This quarter we held 15 focus groups with 140 members as well as 15 interviews with influencers from within our community and the higher education ecosystem. The thoughtful advice from these sessions clarified EDUCAUSE’s value, predicted member needs in five years, and provided recommendations about strategic priorities for the association.

We commissioned a member survey that received approximately 1600 responses and provided a wealth of detailed information about our membership model and how our members perceive specific EDUCAUSE programs and services. The survey firm also performed a comparative analysis of the EDUCAUSE dues, membership, and services models against its leading competitors.

At the March EDUCAUSE board meeting, board members explored the results of the research along with future trends in associations, higher education, and consumer expectations. The meeting resulted in a set of planning priorities that will be refined into goals and strategies at the June board meeting.


The executive team and the board created a draft framework based on three major five-year priorities and associated goals. After another round of refinements, we anticipate that the board will endorse the draft plan in mid-August, after which we will seek additional community feedback. See President John O'Brien's blog post for more information.


On August 15th, the EDUCAUSE Board of Directors, endorsed three focused, compelling strategic priorities, immediately launching the next phase in our planning process. Between now and expected final approval at the October EDUCAUSE board meeting, we are inviting members to respond to and comment on the proposed plan.

As covered in detail in this presentation, a recording of a town hall session we held for member representatives in early September, the strategic plan features three priorities with a handful of goals supporting each:

Strategic Priorities

The presentation is the best way to learn about the proposed strategic priorities in context, so please take a look and—as always—contact the strategic planning team with any questions or suggestions.


We are pleased to announce that the new strategic priorities for 2017–2021 were unanimously approved by the board of directors at the October 2016 board meeting.

View the 2017-2021 Strategic Priorities and Goals > 


We Welcome Your Feedback

To share your thoughts and ideas on the future of EDUCAUSE, e-mail us at strategicfeedback@educause.edu.

Media Representatives

Please contact us to learn more about our strategic plan.