Lehigh University has launched the Kuali Open Library Environment (OLE), the first university in the nation to implement the open-source, community-based library management system.
Kuali OLE software was created through a partnership of the Mellon Foundation and ten of the nation's leading university libraries who brought their respective library professionals together to build a "best practices" integrated library system, designed by higher education librarians for higher education libraries.
The OLE system is part of a suite of academically-oriented software solutions being designed and developed by research universities that include Lehigh University, Indiana University, the University of Chicago, The Bloomsbury Colleges – University of London, Duke University, North Carolina State University, University of Florida Partnership, University of Maryland, University of Michigan, the University of Pennsylvania and Villanova University. The University of Chicago will be the next academic library to go into production with OLE later in August and the remaining partner institutions will go live with the software in the 2015/16 academic year.
Kuali OLE replaces Lehigh's current library management system with a next generation open source, open architecture system. The system will provide all the traditional library services expected as well as provide libraries with new enhanced ways to manage electronic resources from electronic books to digital born resources to streaming videos to cloud services—all at a fraction of the cost of purchasing these systems from proprietary software vendors.