Centre for Basic Research (CBR) Library was established in 1987 with a vision to spearhead the generation and dissemination of appropriate basic and policy information and knowledge so as increase consciousness and improve the quality of life.


Informed by its vision CBR’s objectives include

Research on issues of social significance;
Documentation of materials on these issues;
Publication and dissemination of research results; and,
Research capacity building

CBR Library in Brief

From CBR’s the inception, the library has been a major component of research both as a place for study and a source of reference, providing book and non-book materials, which support research.

The library now constitutes a fully fledged research resource centre that includes the following: reference materials; a documentation service that provides a newspaper clipping service and a collection of conference/seminar papers and other unpublished materials, and a music archive.

Working Hours

The library is open during working days (Monday to Friday).

DaysOpening timeClosing time
Monday8:30 am5:30 pm
Tuesday8:30 am5:30 pm
Wednesday8:30 am5:30 pm
Thursday8:30 am5:30 pm
Friday8:30 am5:30 pm


Library Routines and Activities

Acquisition& collection, processing, storage and retrieval of information materials
Providing library user and advisory services
Admission of affiliates
Internship and volunteer admission management services
Publication of the research results in form of working papers and commissioned reports; Workshop reports, Occasional papers and policy briefs,
Dissemination of research results through exhibition and sale of publications; exchanges; legal deposits and donations.
Organisation and management of weekly seminars
Providing general information services

“Organization of the library collection” The Library uses the Dewey Decimal Classification Scheme to arrange its collection. It is divided into ten fields of knowledge namely: General Knowledge/Generalia; Philosophy/Psychology; Religion; Social Sciences; Languages; Natural Sciences; Applied Sciences; The Arts; Literatures, and Biography/History and Geography.

The library comprises four major sections, and working spaces which occupy more than 90% of CBR’s enclosed space. The major sections are:

Books and reports including theses and dissertations;
Documentation that include unpublished materials and newspaper clippings (paper and digital);
Journals and magazines which include more than 100 journal titles; and
The Uganda Popular Music archives.

The books, reports and unpublished materials (gray data) are easily accessible through CBR’s computerized bibliographic library database that holds above 16,000 entries. The database acts as the library electronic catalogue where all the metadata elements are treated as search terms either in whole or in part. A full-text and audio-visual digital library is also planned to cater for materials in digital forms, on CDs, VCDs, DVDs, CD ROMS and computer hard disks, to make them available at the click of a mouse. “Books, Reports, Journals”] The library boasts of a rich collection of books especially in the areas of research methods and theories; political and social theory; ethnicity; religion; government and politics; women and gender studies, political economy, environment, economic conditions and policy, culture and African history.

The book section also includes a collection of dissertations at graduate and masters levels, and PhD theses.

The library also holds a collection of more than one hundred journal titles some of which date as far back as 1910. Some of the notable journals include Uganda Journal, African Affairs, African Political Economy, World Development, etc. In addition, library has full access to some free online databases such as JOSTOR and some limited access to a few premium databases that are attached to some of the ongoing projects, especially those funded by IDRC.

The library operates a documentation service that provides newspaper clippings and a collection of conference/seminar papers and other unpublished materials that fall within the CBR research agenda. The newspaper clippings service which is the main function of the CBR documentation, covers more than 70 thematic areas including AIDS, land tenure issues, constitutionalism, democracy and governance, gender issues, armed conflict, to mention a few.

The documentation of materials, which started in mid-April 1989, and continues to the present, includes news items, commentaries and opinion-letters culled from Ugandan newspaper publications. For easy storage, retrieval and access, the clippings have been digitally stored on computer and CDs. This service is of great attraction because currently, it is the only one of its kind in Uganda.Under the Enhancing Research Capacity (ENRECA) Urban Cultures Project, CBR has collected and organized a Popular Music archive, the only one of its kind in Uganda.

The objective of this archive is to construct a repository that not only preserves representative samples of Ugandan popular music, but also actively facilitates research into the growth of popular cultural forms in Uganda.

The archive currently holds more than 6000 songs and videos by Ugandan musicians and artists of various eras and genres which has been collated and stored in MP3 and Audio video formats.

The initial collection of songs has been published into a catalogue of Popular Music in Uganda, in which about 900 records have been analyzed. Publication of the catalogue is supposed to be on-going work and from time to time the catalogue should be updated to reflect new songs which have come onto the Ugandan music scene.

Library Networking and Resource Sharing

The CBR Library has established Publications exchange programmes and technical services with various institutions, both within and outside Uganda. Networking intends to facilitate marketing of research products, information dissemination, technical assistance and improvement in reference services among others.

Library Membership

CBR researchers have automatic membership to the library. Other categories of users gain membership through affiliation.

Affiliates Programme

The library has an affiliate’s programme through which the public can access and utilize the services accordingly. Affiliates come from a spectrum of practitioners such as academics, civil society actors, civil servants and students, including those from outside Uganda.

From 2001 to date, the cumulative number of affiliates who have at one time or other registered or renewed their membership to access and utilize CBR resources and services has risen to 367. A good number of these have been Masters Students and PhD candidates.

Affiliation to CBR can be both by Individuals and Institutions and is offered upon payment a minimal annual fee. Both categories would be entitled to unlimited access to library documents within the library, receive the Annual Report of CBR free of charge, and 50% discount on purchase of CBR Occasional Papers and Workshop Reports. Affiliates would also be entitled to participate in CBR’s public lectures and Seminars, and may, in consultation with the Executive Director, make presentations to the CBR research community.

Affiliation category and applicable fees

A. Residents earning in local currency:

(a). Individualshs. 100,000 PA
(b). InstitutionsShs. 300,000 PA
(c). Readership (individuals from affiliated institutions only)Shs. 10,000 PM

B. Residents and non-Residents earning in convertible currency:

(a). Individual 
 -Researchers (MA & PhD)US$ 150 PA
 -Researchers (Post-Doctoral & All others)US$ 200 PA
(b). InstitutionalUS$ 500 PA

The Internship Programme

The CBR Library accepts internship placement requests from institutions that offer programmes in library and information science related courses, for students who have recently completed or are undertaking those undergraduate graduate courses.

The purposes of the Library Internship Programme are to promote interaction and dialogue between young professionals and the Library; to familiarize interns with the Library, archives and information management related activities, to provide support to activities within the CBR Library and open the young professional to the practice of work.

In addition to routine information management activities, work assignments are given to interns according to their study background and the experience of the intern. Interns may be assigned to assist staff with some of the following:

Processing library materials, a process that includes; stamping and accessioning, cataloguing and classification library information materials, spine-marking, managing digital publications and other materials; indexing the catalogued materials; compiling subject bibliographies; collecting and digitization of selected newspaper clippings; assisting with public services like exhibitions; shelving newly processed library materials; handling the issue desk and other relevant activities.”Future Library Enhancement Plans”

Future Library Enhancement Plans

Knowledge creation and knowledge dissemination are key activities expected of any research institution. CBR library takes the centre stage providing the springboard for its mother institution to initiate and carry on research through the intricacies of the research and information cycle. However, to maintain its relevance to the generation of knowledge that feeds into further research, the library requires urgent enhancement. To this effect, a plan has been rolled out to address some of the critical library needs which include restocking, increasing shelving pace, re-designing CBR website, increasing CBR’s online presence by publishing online; recruiting and re-training staff to increase staff/activity ratio, and more

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  • +256704 342987
  • cbr.uganda@gmail.com/library@cbr.ug
  • P.O.Box 9863, Kampala – Uganda
  • Plot 15 Baskerville Avenue, Kololo,