VALA2022 Onsite Session 2 Chadwick

Koha for a cataloguing agency: considerations and challenges for a system implementation during COVID lockdown

This session is sponsored by IEEE Xplore

Tuesday 14 June 2022, 14:10 – 14:40

Ben Chadwick

  • Director, Research and Information Services
  • Education Services Australia
Chris Cormack
  • Technical Lead – Koha Team
  • Catalyst IT
Aleisha Amohia
  • Koha Development Lead
  • Catalyst IT

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Read the paper and view the presentation recording and slides here:


In 2020, the Schools Catalogue Information Service (SCIS) commenced a project to replace its existing cataloguing system with Koha, an open-source library management system. Catalyst was appointed to undertake the installation, data migration and integration with SCIS’s existing systems, as well as providing training and ongoing support. This paper describes the project-management process and how it was adapted to accommodate COVID-19 lockdowns. It outlines customisations and additional developments undertaken to support SCIS’s specific needs and workflows, and further work and on-going support arrangements in the post-launch phase.


Dr Ben Chadwick is Director, Research and Information Services at Education Services Australia where he oversees the Schools Catalogue Information Service (SCIS) and the Australian Education Vocabularies (IEV), including the linked data Schools Online Thesaurus (ScOT). Ben grew up on Turrbal/Jagera country but now lives on Wurundjeri land, in Brunswick East, with his partner, two daughters and a greyhound.

Chris Cormack is of Kāi Tahu, Kāti Māmoe and Waitaha descent. He has 24 years’ experience working in the ICT sector, with 21 of those being in the Library ICT sector. He was one of the original developers of the Koha library management system, started in Horowhenua and now used by over 15,000 libraries worldwide. Chris started his professional career working for Te Pūtahi a Toi at Massey University after completing his studies for a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and a Bachelor of Arts in Māori Studies and Mathematics. He programmed the backend of the Toi te Kupu system (a catalogue of resources in te reo Māori and for the teaching of te reo Māori) Chris is now Kaihuawaere Matihiko at Catalyst IT.

Aleisha Amohia (Te Ātihaunui-a-Papārangi) (she/her) is a Koha Developer at Catalyst IT in Wellington, New Zealand. She has been working on Koha since 2014. Aleisha recently graduated from Victoria University of Wellington with a Bachelor of Science (Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence) and a Bachelor of Commerce (Management and Information Systems).


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License