Strategic Plan

Adopted by AAS Board of Trustees 16 July 2021.

View the AAS Strategic Plan 2021-26 (PDF)

Building On Our Strengths

The American Astronomical Society exists to enable astronomical research and the communication of its discoveries to professionals and to the public. Currently, the AAS has more than 8,000 members, publishes the premier astronomy journals, organizes meetings attended by thousands of its members, and represents the voice of astronomy to all.

To strengthen these core functions and ensure the continued preeminence of the AAS in astronomy, planning began in 2019 to revisit the Mission statement, formulate a Vision statement and list of Values, and consider areas needing improvements. The Board of Trustees, Division and Committee Chairs, and an outside consultant formulated this strategic plan through five monthly virtual meetings. A subcommittee consisting of the President, President-elect, a Board member, and chairs of two committees then incorporated suggestions from members following postings of the ongoing drafts at the January and June meetings, as well as from a wider distribution from individuals to departments.

This document presents that plan in no priority order. Every goal and action is intended to support astronomical science and particular strategic areas we believe will most benefit from focused attention. This is not a complete statement of actions, for no plan can forecast every unforeseen circumstance. Rather, this strategic plan emphasizes areas where we believe additional attention will enhance our mission by building on our traditional strengths in advancing astronomical science. The Society will review its goals annually at the Board of Trustees and Strategic Assembly meetings and will make modifications and add action items as needs arise.

The Mission of the AAS

To enhance and share humanity’s scientific understanding of the universe as a diverse and inclusive astronomical community.

The Vision of the AAS

To create a world where all people value and benefit from a scientific understanding of our universe.

Our Values

  • Curiosity: We conduct research driven by our curiosity about the Universe.
  • Integrity: We act with integrity, ethical behavior, and transparency as we perform our investigations and share our results.
  • Inclusivity: We use fair and accessible practices to create a diverse and welcoming scientific community.
  • Empowerment: We mentor and support our early career members, using our resources to create a positive environment for them and for our astronomical community.
  • Sustainability: We accomplish our work using environmentally sensitive actions rooted in scientific understanding.