We are excited to announce the launch of the It Takes a Village (ITAV) Open-Source Software Sustainability toolkit and new website. It Takes a Village brings together open-source software (OSS) programs serving cultural and scientific heritage to develop shared sustainability strategies. ITAV aims to share best practices and tools with the community so that emerging programs have a solid place to start, and those which are more established can continue to assess and strengthen their program sustainability. 

The ITAV in Practice Toolkit is an adaptable set of tools that enables all stakeholders in an OSS program to participate in an assessment of each facet of sustainability, develop balanced strategies to advance sustainability goals and integrate sustainability plans into other organizational planning efforts.  

This work builds on the previous It Takes a Village Open-Source Software Guidebook, created with the support of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). The Guidebook is a practical reference source to help OSS programs serving cultural and scientific heritage organizations plan for long-term sustainability. The guidebook outlines the facets and phases of sustainability and provides objectives for moving forward. 

The new website —  itav.lyrasis.org — includes the guidebook, toolkit and community case studies.  

Please reach out to us with any thoughts or questions. 


It Takes a Village to create, manage and sustain our efforts, many of which are critical to the fields of cultural and scientific heritage.  

We would like to thank all those who gave so generously of their time and feedback. A complete list is available here. We want to express particular appreciation for several key individuals and institutions including our Advisory Group, Beta and Pilot Testers and Workshop Participants.  

  • This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) grant LG-246253-OLS-20.
  • We want to recognize the incredible work of the Co-Director Megan Forbes for her tireless efforts and creativity.
  • Our highly regarded Advisory Group includes:
    • Rob Cartolano, Associate Vice President for Technology and Preservation, Columbia University Libraries  
    • Tom Cramer, Assistant University Librarian and Director, Digital Library Systems & Service, Stanford University 
    • Michele Kimpton, formerly DPLA and Lyrasis 
    • Katherine Skinner, former Executive Director, Educopia Institute 
    • Ann Baird Whiteside, Librarian and Assistant Dean for Information Services, Harvard University, Graduate School of Design  
  • Beta and Pilot Testers. The people and programs who conducted beta and pilot testing represent the following organizations:
  • Workshop participants. The many workshop participants who gave so generously of their time, energy and innovation are recognized here.