Keeping up with Kohacon20 – Episode 2

by Tosca Waerea

Catalyst is proud to be the host and organiser of Kohacon20 and to support their dedicated Koha team in creating an exciting and engaging conference.

Koha is a free and open source library system that was founded in Horowhenua, New Zealand in 1999. Initially a solution to the Y2K bug, Chris Cormack states that, "We decided to make it open source so that hopefully other people in the world would start using it as well." Implemented in more than 15,000 libraries today, Koha is an international project with thousands of volunteers contributing to its ongoing development.

This year, Catalyst is delighted to be hosting Kohacon, the annual conference of the Koha community, in Wellington from 19 - 25 October. Kohacon is an opportunity for the wider Koha community (libraries, developers, and other interested contributors) to come together.

Conference format

19 October – 21 October: A three-day single-track conference to be held at the National Library of New Zealand.

22 October: Cultural Day is a chance to see and do things that are unique to Wellington and the New Zealand library community. This is also an excellent chance to get to know each other better before working together in the coming days.

23 October: Workshops to learn new skills and improve existing ones.

24 October – 25 October: DIY Koha is an opportunity to brainstorm and exchange ideas, squash bugs, and work on new functionality. It may also include workshops, discussions, and hands-on demonstrations.

NZ speakers will deliver talks at the Tiakiwai Conference Centre venue at the National Library of New Zealand, and both pre-recorded and live talks will be streamed online.

Kathryn Tyree, Koha Services Manager at Catalyst NZ, points out, “A recent Koha webinar received over 10,000 views, so we are expecting a lot of international engagement. Especially given so many of our colleagues are currently working from home. It looks like Kohacon will be the biggest professional development opportunity for librarians this year."

Kohacon will go ahead regardless of the status of Covid-19 restrictions. The conference will be completely online if required, however, we have plans for New Zealand participants to also gather in Wellington, in person. We hope to see as many New Zealand speakers and delegates as possible. Over the coming days, we'll be highlighting our speakers, their talks and workshops, and activities for Cultural Day and DIY Koha.

In-person seats are limited so please register your intention to attend online or in-person at https://2020.kohacon.org/posts/registration/. Certificates of attendance will be issued.

Follow the Kohacon20 website to see our upcoming series of regular updates, highlights, and information.