Proposed Graduate Research Library

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The MAHATMA GANDHI building housed the first library of the University. When the University built Jomo Kenyatta Library, the library moved to the new building and Mahatma Gandhi building remained vacant. It was then converted to a bookshop, administrative offices, and storage area for students and finance records. However, two special libraries, Institute for development studies Library and the population research institute library (PSRI) as well as the school of Journalism remained.

In 2016, when the Indian Government visited the University of Nairobi, they voiced the desire for the MAHATMA GANDHI building to revert back to a Library and it pledged 100 million Kenyan shillings to refurbish and renovate the library as well as facilitate the movement.

The university library management in reviewing the overall functions of the library made a decision to convert the building to a Graduate Research Library housed there, since the current Graduate Research Library could not accommodate all the Postgraduate Students.

Later, the same year a committee was set up and it came up with various recommendations key among them was the need for the overall renovation of the building that would cover improvement of the floor, painting of the entire building, revival of the lifts and the inclusion of  sections such as staff offices, staff workrooms, computer labs, circulation area, cafeteria, study carrel areas, reading areas, kitchen, washrooms; the establishment of a special section to house Indian information resources and that the completed library be open to postgraduate students and academic staff.

The first department to exit was the University Bookshop which had been occupying the first and second floor of the building. When the contractor moved in early April, it was then obvious that everyone else had to move out as quickly as possible. The three graduate libraries, Population Research Institute Library (PSRI), The Institute of development studies (IDS), and Centre for Advanced Studies in Environmental Studies (CASELAP) also had to move out. The movements of these three libraries commenced on 26th April and even though it took longer than expected it concluded on 18th may 2018.

And so the university community is waiting with expectation for the renovated graduate research library to be completed. It is expected that when it is complete, it will be a state of the art graduate library with close to 1000 sitting spaces for the students, modern reading rooms, carrels, comfortable lounges and discussion rooms where students and researchers can interact and discuss issues. It will also have excellent internet connections complete with state of the art computer facilities that connects users to various information resources and services.