National Leadership Grants for Libraries

Posted: August 25, 2020

Deadline: October 2, 2020

Grantor: Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)

Additional Information

The National Leadership Grants for Libraries Program (NLG-L) support projects that enhance the quality of library and archive services nationwide by advancing theory and practice. Successful proposals will generate results such as new tools, research findings, models, services, practices, or collaborative approaches that will be widely used, adapted, scaled, or replicated to extend the benefits of federal investment.

To foster the adoption and spread of innovations and practices, IMLS encourages proposals at varying stages of maturity including the emergence of new ideas, validation of existing approaches, and practices for scaling up across library and archives communities. Successful proposals may generate new tools, research findings, models, services, practices, or alliances that can be widely used, adapted, scaled, or replicated to extend the benefits of federal investment. Each phase in a project’s life cycle offers opportunities to learn, discover, develop, and test new ideas, activities, software, services, etc.

The benefits of projects funded in this program must not be limited to the local community but must also advance national practice. Projects focused on preserving or providing access to a particular collection or set of collections cannot be supported. Similarly, the program cannot support the digitization of content or pre-digitization activities such as inventorying collections.

All applications must designate one of the following project categories:

  • Lifelong Learning
  • Community Catalysts
  • National Digital Infrastructures and Initiatives

To be eligible the National Leadership Grants for Libraries Program, you must be either a unit of State or local government or be a private, nonprofit organization that has nonprofit status under the Internal Revenue Code of 1954, as amended. In addition, you must qualify as one of the following six types of organizations:

  1. A library or a parent organization, such as a school district, a municipality, a State agency, or an academic institution, that is responsible for the administration of a library.
  2. An academic or administrative unit, such as a graduate school of library and information science that is part of an institution of higher education
  3. A digital library, if it makes library materials publicly available
  4. A library agency that is an official agency of a State or other unit of government and is charged by the law governing it with the extension and development of public library services within its jurisdiction
  5. A library consortium that is a local, statewide, regional, interstate, or international cooperative association of library entities
  6. A library association that exists on a permanent basis.

Program Contact
If you have general questions about this program, please send an email to

Back to Listing