Computing & Information Services

Overview of the Strategic Planning Process

Reed's strategic planning process, established in 1989 and conducted every five years since, is an extremely labor intensive but highly effective exercise.  It involves face-to-face interviews with faculty, staff, students, administrative department heads, senior officers, board members, alumni, and others.  Colleagues at peer institutions, experts in national organizations, and specialists in the private sector are also queried.  The process routinely consumes six months, during which the following questions are explored:

  • How is information technology used at Reed to support instruction, research, and administrative operations?
  • Where do technology resources or services fall short?
  • What innovative uses of technology are emerging at peer institutions and are they of interest to Reed?
  • What future uses of technology would members of the Reed community like to pursue?
  • What new technologies are likely to appear in the next few years and how should Reed prepare to deal with them?


As a result of information derived from interviews and inquiries of hundreds of individuals, both inside and outside the Reed community, a list of potential strategic technology goals is assembled.  The preliminary list of goals is vetted by several groups to ensure:

  • appropriate alignment between institutional priorities and technology goals;
  • realistic assessment of the costs and benefits of each goal;
  • relative importance of the goals to one another (prioritization);
  • determination of risk and success factors.


The groups that review and help to refine the list of goals include:

  • President's Senior Staff;
  • Computing Policy Committee (CPC);
  • Web Policy Committee;
  • Board of Trustees;
  • Computing & Information Services staff;
  • Library staff.

All Reed students were invited to provide input to the planning process via an online questionnaire. A copy of the 2009 questionnaire can be downloaded here.

The final list of goals is made available to the entire college community and feedback is solicited.