SAMP's operational structure is governed and determined by its members and its Bylaws are contained in the SAMP Prospectus, which can be revised by SAMP members. The members of SAMP elect the SAMP Executive Committee, which helps guide SAMP and set organizational priorities.
SAMP is made possible through the support of the Center for Research Libraries, which serves as its administrative, fiscal, and legal agent.
SAMP meets once a year, in conjuction with the Annual Conference of the Association for Asian Studies, at which time SAMP considers and votes on funding proposals for acquisitions and new projects. Institutions or nonprofit organizations that maintain a library and whose interests coincide with SAMP are welcome to Join SAMP.
SAMP was founded in 1967 by North American librarians specializing in South Asian materials. At article about SAMP's History describes the work of SAMP over the years.