Board statement: An agile, flexible future for ALIA

Canberra, 4 March 2020: Imagine a future where ALIA becomes less about an office in Canberra, and more about agile collaboration across Australia. Where ALIA has the flexibility to operate substantially beyond the limitations of a single building, build new teams in new locations, and take our services and events to more of our members where they are. A future where ALIA can invest its financial assets in a way that is sound and sustainable, with minimal management costs. A future where ALIA has solid financial grounding that allows our Board to be courageous and audacious in pursuing initiatives, as we approach our centenary in 2037.

The Australian Library and Information Association’s (ALIA) move into a new building in Canberra in 1990 - 9-11 Napier Close, Deakin - was a major step for the Association. Over the years, ALIA Directors have debated the merits of retaining the building as the Association's main asset. After consultation with an Advisory Committee of long-term ALIA members and senior library leaders, the ALIA Board has made the decision to progress with the sale of the building. The property will be listed for sale in May 2020.
The financial status of ALIA is secure and stable. This decision has not been made because ALIA is in financial distress, but rather to safeguard the financial future of the Association.

Our aim is to ensure the Association reaches its 100th anniversary in 2037 fit for purpose and in a strong and sustainable position. The sale will enable ALIA to create a substantial, flexible asset base, with several million dollars held in a balanced investment vehicle and it will relieve ALIA from the burden of property management and provide more flexibility for the future of the Association.

There are no plans for ALIA to move from Canberra and, depending on the terms of the agreement, it is likely that the Association will remain in our current premises for at least three years post-sale and potentially longer.
About the Australian Library and Information Association
The Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) is the professional organisation for the Australian library and information services sector.
With 5,000 members across Australia, we provide the national voice of the profession in the development, promotion and delivery of quality library and information services, through leadership, advocacy and mutual support.