Phi brings Commonwealth Fellows together to look at Koha

(From left to right) Gracian Chimwaza, Executive Director ITOCA; Murali Prasad, Library Director, Public Health Foundation of India, Hyderabad; Paul Johnson Information Landscape Librarian, Staffordshire University  

Two Commonwealth Fellows currently being hosted in the UK  visited the University of Staffordshire for very informative discussions to learn about Koha open source software which has great potential for Low & Middle Income Countries.

In 2010 Staffordshire University became the first UK Higher Education institution to choose an open source library management system (Koha) to replace their existing system. Koha is an advanced open-source Integrated Library System in use today by hundreds of libraries worldwide and although this was the first UK University implementation, Koha is widely used around the world by a growing community of libraries collaborating together to achieve technology and service goals.

It hosts a range of features including: Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC) module, Full catalogue module, Circulation module which fully automates borrowing and item management, and Acquisitions module which assists librarians with both acquisitions and more generally with budget management.

Koha is designed to work on Linux, but will work on Windows with the installation of a series of additional modules. It is operable in English. Spanish, Arabic and French, with other languages being developed and translated by the community members. It is released under a GNU General Public License (GPL) .

The use of Koha means that there is no vendor lock-in, or annual licence fees. Libraries are free to use the software and – if required, to contract hosting and support from established service providers. Below are two case studies of African instituttions that have adopted the Koha solution.

For more info on Koha visit

Contributed by Chipo Msengezi (ITOCA IT Outreach Center for Africa)

Thanks to Chris Cormack I have put in the URL for the version that Staffordshire is using.  Jean Shaw, Phi


About jgreigshaw

I work with Partnerships in Health Information which promotes partnership between libraries in Africa and the UK with an emphasis in African leadership. I have visited Kenya, Mali, Uganda and Zambia though Phi has contacts in many more African countries.
This entry was posted in Health, Libraries of the Future, Technology and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Phi brings Commonwealth Fellows together to look at Koha

  1. You should look at this is the version Staffordshire is using. They don’t use Liblime Koha, but Koha itself.

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