Organizational memberships and the future of The Carpentries

Organizational memberships have defined the joint future of Software Carpentry and Data Carpentry together as The Carpentries

Over the past three years, we’ve used annual organizational memberships as a way to build long-term relationships with Universities and other research institutions. Through these memberships, we have worked to define and shape a shared future where The Carpentries activities are beneficial to our instructors as well as to our member organizations and their needs. We now have more than 60 member organizations in 10 countries. Collectively these memberships generate 59% of our revenue. Workshop fees bring in 19% of our annual revenue, and grants and donations account for 22% of revenue. Through these recurring annual membership fees, we have been able to secure a future where The Carpentries is a significant ally in the spread of skills and impactful digital skills teaching at many of the leading research institutions in the world.

In the diagram below, you can see that we’ve been growing memberships and have recently crossed a threshold where new memberships (those which began within the most recent trailing year) are outpacing renewals by 5%. These are exciting times in the growth of The Carpentries and the buy-in we’re seeing from research institutions around the world. Your work as Instructors and volunteers in the organization is having tremendous impact in how organizations think about developing peer-learning communities of practice.

The main benefit of our memberships today is through Instructor training for people at the member organizations. On top of Instructor training, key pieces of infrastructure have been developed and are supported (etherpads, GitHub organizations, websites, documentation, Zoom, etc.) which enable and catalyze the activities of our growing instructor community. We also work to help connect and communicate successes and challenges in growing local communities.

Become a Champion !

Join our Carpentry Champions community to learn more about growing your own local community. Over time we hope to continue to grow our services and capabilities around activities which make it easy to bring high-quality skilled Instructors together with learners. At the same time, we are looking to grow to support and empower researchers in our community to define the future of how researchers of the next generation will work together using digital tools.

Memberships have been the foundational piece of revenue generation which enabled Software Carpentry and Data Carpentry to imagine a joint future together as The Carpentries. This joint future will increase our reach and our impact in the world. Now that the organizations are merged into one, we are looking to you, our community, for what you care about and where you hope we take this energy and success in the future. Additionally, the large proportion of Carpentries members running their memberships through their research library organization have helped us demonstrate the long-term value proposition of the efforts of the Library Carpentry community. Through our membership revenue, we’ve been able to grow our staff and the impact we can have in more communities around the world.

The staff team spend our time and energy in ways that we hope can catalyze the efforts of our Instructors, our members, and our learners as they work to learn and spread skills where they are needed. Thank you for all that you do to help us continue to grow and spread the impact and empowerment of digital skills to all research communities.

Dialogue & Discussion