Samvera Fundraising Working Group

Working Group sunsetted at the end of 2019.  A new Fundraising Team was set up in 2020.

Scope & Objectives

The Samvera Partners have agreed upon the desirability of having one or two dedicated staff to further the work of the Community.  It is suggested that one be a Community Manager and one a Technical Manager.  We are advised that the costs of employing someone in these roles likely ranges between $165k and $210k per year each.  Such funding requirements are considerably beyond Samvera's income at the present time and would be in addition to the Community's regular outgoings.  At the Partner Meeting in Salt Lake City (October 2018), the Samvera Steering Group was asked to charter a Working Group to consider Samvera's fund raising activities and to make recommendations aimed at attracting a much greater income stream.

The Fundraising Working Group (FWG) is asked to consider and report on three specific matters:

  1. the desirability of seeking sponsorship for elements of the annual Samvera Connect conference.  Such sponsorship income might, for instance, be used to release some of the income from attendance fees for a wider purpose.  If sponsorship is seen as desirable, the FWG is asked to propose a practical approach.
  2. how funds might be raised from sources beyond the current donors. Those Samvera Partners and Supporters who are able to offer monetary contributions provide some $2,000 to $15,000 each annually and the total of these falls well short of the figure needed to support one employee, let alone two.  It seems likely that we need to look beyond our immediate Community for income.  The FWG is asked to provide a recommended approach to this additional fundraising.
  3. how to manage the annual funding appeal to Samvera's Partners and Supporters in such a way that is complementary to the additional fundraising described in #2 above.

It should be noted that the work of the FWG probably touches on the work of at least the Samvera Marketing Working Group and that of the Contribution Model Working Group.  It is anticipated that the FWG will liaise with other WGs as appropriate.

Deliverables & Timeframe

  • February 28th 2019:  Recommendations, including suggested texts, for an approach to 2019's fundraising amongst Samvera Partners and Supporters, complementary to a wider fundraising effort.  If practicable, an interim, or draft, report by January 23rd would be helpful for consideration at the Samvera Steering Group Winter Retreat.
  • March 31st, 2019:  Report on the desirability of Sponsorship for Samvera Connect and, if appropriate, practical approaches to attracting it (the timing is in order to inform the Connect 2019 planning process)
  • Partner meeting April 2019:  Interim report for feedback outlining the likely recommendations for a wide fundraising effort
  • June 30, 2019:  Final, integrated report combining all the above into an annual cycle. Fundraising WG: Final Report to Partners_ October 2019.pdf

Following the review of the FWG's final report by Partners, a decision will be taken to sunset the Group or to ask it to undertake further work.

Meeting Times & Communication Channels

General communications from the FWG will take place through the Samvera Community mailing list.

Meetings take place at 08:00PT, 11:00ET, 16:00GMT to accommodate the eight hour time zone span.


Karen Cariani  (WGBH, Boston)

Jon Dunn (Indiana University) (Chair)

Hannah Frost (Stanford University)

Richard Green (University of Hull - co-facilitator)

Jessica Hilt (University of California, San Diego)

Brian Hole (Ubiquity Press)

Ryan Steans (Northwestern University, Avalon - to 16/8/2019)


  • helpful links 

Working documents

Meeting Agendas and Notes

Meetings take place at 08:00PT, 11:00ET, 16:00GMT