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NLM Launches 2017-2027 Strategic Plan

March 5, 2018

Plan sets course for data-driven discovery and health, enhanced stakeholder engagement, and workforce development; highlights open science and the role of libraries in providing trusted information.

The National Library of Medicine (NLM; the Library) today released the NLM Strategic Plan 2017-2027: A Platform for Biomedical Discovery and Data-Powered Health, which will position the Library to carry out its congressionally mandated mission and support the important work of the National Institutes of Health by creating a future in which data and information transform and accelerate biomedical discover and improve health and health care.

Developed with input from hundreds of stakeholders and advisers, including librarians, informatics professionals, biomedical and data scientists, clinicians, public health specialists, NLM staff, and the public at large, the strategic plan charts a pathway towards NLM’s third century.

“With this strategic plan, NLM reaffirms its status as a trustable provider of health information, an essential platform for discovery, and an innovator of information technologies to promote health and provide better health care,” said NLM Director Patricia Flatley Brennan, RN, PhD. “As we look forward, this document positions us to address existing and emerging challenges in biomedical research and public health,” she continued. “We will achieve this by creating a vibrant workforce; building on our core functions of acquiring, collecting, and disseminating the world’s biomedical literature; and extending these skills and developing new ones to make data findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable.”

The strategic plan focuses on three essential, interdependent goals that will help guide the Library’s priorities over the next 10 years as it pursues its mission of collecting and integrating an expanding set of information resources, and enables them to be analyzed by tools emerging from the informatics and data science research front. Those goals are to:

  1. accelerate discovery and advance health through data-driven research;
  2. reach more people in more ways through enhanced dissemination and engagement; and
  3. build a workforce for data-driven research and health.

Over the next decade, NLM leadership will work together to identify and take the next steps needed to implement the plan, with the overarching goal of improving and enhancing the Library’s research and services.

The NLM Strategic Plan 2017-2027: A Platform for Biomedical Discovery and Data-Powered Health can be found at:


Since its founding in 1836, the National Library of Medicine has played a pivotal role in translating biomedical research into practice and is a leader in information innovation. NLM is the world's largest medical library, and millions of scientists, health professionals and the public around the world use NLM services every day.


Last Reviewed: March 29, 2018