The Digital Agency for International Development

Happy Birthday Hinari!

By Martin Burchell on 08 July 2016

Fifteen years ago, six publishing companies signed a statement of intent that led to the development of Hinari - an initiative that provides developing countries with free or low-cost access to academic and professional peer-reviewed content in biomedical and related social sciences. Since those early days Aptivate has worked with the World Health Organisation to develop Hinari and its associated management tools further.

Before Hinari existed, medical students were being taught using notes that were 30 years old, universities had only a few old books and government officials were making policies without access to the latest public health research.

Today Hinari forms part of the wider Research4Life programme, which currently gives researchers in 117 eligible countries access to 21,000 professional peer-reviewed journals and 49,000 books.

Since our initial involvement in 2006, conducting interviews and prototyping changes with medical researchers in Ghana, we've added many new features and improvements to Hinari. These include  support for Portuguese, Arabic and Russian, thus increasing access to Hinari around the world. We've also made Hinari much faster for users in areas with low bandwidth, giving clear indications as to which publications are accessible upfront and reducing the steps required to download them.