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In April 2020, the QUality Assessment and REProducibility for Instruments and Images in Light Microscopy (QUAREP-LiMi) initiative was formed. This initiative comprises imaging scientists from academia and industry who share a common interest in achieving a better understanding of the performance and limitations of microscopes and improved quality control (QC) in light microscopy. The ultimate goal of the QUAREP-LiMi initiative is to establish a set of common QC standards, guidelines, metadata models, and tools, including detailed protocols, with the ultimate aim of improving reproducible advances in scientific research. This White Paper 1) summarizes the major obstacles identified in the field that motivated the launch of the QUAREP-LiMi initiative; 2) identifies the urgent need to address these obstacles in a grassroots manner, through a community of stakeholders including, researchers, imaging scientists, bioimage analysts, bioimage informatics developers, corporate partners, funding agencies, standards organizations, scientific publishers, and observers of such; 3) outlines the current actions of the QUAREP-LiMi initiative, and 4) proposes future steps that can be taken to improve the dissemination and acceptance of the proposed guidelines to manage QC. To summarize, the principal goal of the QUAREP-LiMi initiative is to improve the overall quality and reproducibility of light microscope image data by introducing broadly accepted standard practices and accurately captured image data metrics.