Who We Are

The American Society for Microbiology is the largest single life science society, composed of over 47,000 scientists and health professionals. ASM's mission is to promote and advance the microbial sciences.

ASM advances the microbial sciences through conferences, publications, certifications and educational opportunities. It enhances laboratory capacity around the globe through training and resources. It provides a network for scientists in academia, industry and clinical settings. Additionally, ASM promotes a deeper understanding of the microbial sciences to diverse audiences.

The mission of ASM is to promote and advance the microbial sciences.

ASM accomplishes this mission through a variety of products, services and activities. 

  • We provide a platform for sharing the latest scientific discoveries through our books, journals, meetings and conferences. 
  • We help strengthen sustainable health systems around the world though our laboratory capacity building and global engagement programs. 
  • We advance careers through our professional development programs and certifications. 
  • We train and inspire the next generation of scientists through our outreach and educational programs.

ASM members have a passion for the microbial sciences, a desire to connect with their colleagues and a drive to be involved with the profession. Whether it is publishing in an ASM Journal, attending an ASM meeting or volunteering on one of the Society's many boards and committees.

The American Society for Microbiology is committed to standing up for all scientists and ending sexual harassment in the sciences. For more information on sexual harassment, visit the EEOC website.

Big parts of our everyday lives, from energy production, waste recycling, new sources of food, new drug development and infectious diseases to environmental problems and industrial processes-are studied in the microbial sciences.

Microbiology boasts some of the most illustrious names in the history of science--Pasteur, Koch, Fleming, Leeuwenhoek, Lister, Jenner and Salk--and some of the greatest achievements for mankind. Within the 20th century, a third of all Nobel Prizes in Physiology or Medicine have been awarded to microbiologists.

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Read ASM's New Strategic Plan

In 2015 the ASM approved a new strategic plan that focuses the Society’s work on the following goals and objectives. 

Visionary Society 
ASM's culture of scholarship and innovation advances the microbial sciences.

  • Enhance ASM's capacity to communicate authoritatively about the microbial sciences. 
  • Enhance ASM's position as the voice of the microbial sciences. 
  • Strengthen ASM's global partnerships and coalitions. 
  • Enhance ASM's capacity to anticipate and shape the future of the microbial sciences. 
  • Increase key stakeholders' knowledge about and awareness of the challenges facing and the importance of the microbial sciences. 

Science Learning Organization
ASM both educates and learns from stakeholders to ensure the growth and the advancement of the microbial sciences.

  • Cultivate an innovative environment for learning, content development and idea exchange.
  • Increase efficiency and efficacy of programs by regularly assessing the program portfolio, individual services, and ASM's products.
  • Enhance responsiveness to members and stakeholders by regularly soliciting and acting on feedback.
  • Increase engagement of the global microbial sciences community in the work of ASM.
  • Enhance ASM's capacity for personal, professional and scientific development.

Value to Stakeholders
ASM is an inclusive organization, engaging with and responding to the needs of its diverse constituencies.

  • Increase ASM's ability to identify and develop the next generation of leaders for the organization and the science. 
  • Strengthen the relationship of ASM's products and programs to its brand.  
  • Increase our knowledge of and responsiveness to the current and emerging needs of diverse stakeholders. 
  • Improve outreach to current and potential members about the benefits of belonging to ASM. 
  • Increase awareness of the scientific community about ASM programs. 
  • Increase the opportunities for stakeholders to participate in or contribute to ASM. 
  • Enhance ASM's ability to address all members' needs through development and assessment of programs and services. 

Organizational Excellence 
ASM is a vibrant, responsive and transparent organization.

  • Ensure ASM's governance, organizational structures, and processes are transparent, inclusive, efficient and agile. 
  • Strengthen the technology infrastructure to support ASM's goals. 
  • Ensure sufficient resources to achieve ASM's goals. 
  • Encourage a culture of experimentation and calculated risk taking.

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