Becoming a Member

Joining CRL is a two-step process:

Step 1: Determine your institution’s membership cost share.

Voting member cost shares (for North American institutions) are based on a five-year average of a library’s annual materials expenditures. The minimum voting member cost share is currently $1,200, and the maximum is $73,000.

For example, University Library is interested in becoming a CRL member, so it needs to calculate its annual library material expenditure figures to establish a five year average. For FY2013–14, the five year average is based on FY2008–12 expenditures:

University Library's Annual Library Material Expenditure

FY08 $1,200,000
FY09 $800,000
FY10 $1,000,000
FY11 $1,200,000
FY12 $800,000
TOTAL: $5,000,000
AVERAGE (total/5): $1,000,000
Multiply average x .0052 $5,200

So University Library's regular annual membership cost share is $5,200. 

New Voting Member Incentive Program

If University Library has not been a member of CRL before, it qualifies for the New Member Incentive program with a three-year membership commitment.

For its first year of membership, it only has to pay 1/3 of its cost-share price, or $1,733. (The $1,200 minimum cost share, however, still applies.)

The second year, it has to pay 2/3 of the cost-share price, or $3,466.

Not until the third year does University Library have to pay its full cost-share of $5,200, so the library essentially gets one year of membership for free, and all the collection access, Webinar programs, and cooperative resources that come with it.

Global Member Cost Share

Global membership cost shares range from a minimum of $2,000 to a maximum of $13,000 (US$) annually. The membership calculation is based on an average of an institution’s annual library expenditure figures for the most recent five years and requires a minimum three-year membership commitment.

Step 2: Submit a membership application letter

Prospective members are obliged to submit a membership application letter to CRL’s Board of Directors containing the following four elements:

  • Acknowledgment that the institution’s authorizing official has read CRL’s bylaws and agrees to honor the membership terms detailed in the bylaws.
  • A start date. The membership year runs from July 1 through June 30 annually, but new members can begin their membership on a pro-rated basis on the first day of any month.
  • If the institution chooses to enroll through an incentive program, this needs to be made explicit in the letter (voting members only).
  • Signature of the institution’s authorizing official. Preferably this will be an academic dean or provost, since CRL resources will be accessible to the entire institution, but it can also be the library director.

For more information, contact