The DHIS2 projects are hosted at the open source software development lab space located at Kijitonyama campus under the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. The lab space provides a collaborative working and conducive environment to a mixed skill team of more than twenty (20) highly experienced in-house software developers, data analysts, and IS researchers, to carry out activities for the research, development, innovation, and implementation of sustainable web and mobile based solutions using DHIS2 as an open source platform and other open source technologies, to address the growing data demands and changing information needs of various government ministries and agencies.

The lab hosts the two major interrelated projects registered at UDSM namely UDSM DHIS2 Projects (CoICT-IS1605) and UDSM HRHIS Project (UDSM-UCB/CoICT/17-01).


Tanzania ministries of Health and Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children ; Agriculture, Livestock, and Fisheries; and Water. And different local and international not-for-profit organizations working in Tanzania.


The DHIS2 projects are funded by different development partners and NGOs, including Global Funds, JICA, UNICEF, and University of Oslo (Norad).

Scope and Pillars

The DHIS2 project that has been running over the past 16 years started as a very small scale pilot district project (back in 2002) but over the past years through persistence, commitment, and hardworking of the key researchers involved, close support of UDSM management and strong cooperation with Tanzania's Ministry of Health and other partners, the project has grown to become a national large scale project with its implementation scope covering the entire national health system network in Tanzania from the grass root level. The project growth can be described in terms of increase in scope, capacity, capability, and expansion in focus areas overtime while influenced by the four key project pillars: (1) advanced capacity building (2) research and development, (3) software development and innovation (4) Implementation, Training, and user support.

  • Advanced Capacity building

The project serves as the key research platform for postgraduate students in information systems generally and specifically for health informatics that was jointly established at UDSM in 2007 jointly with the University of Oslo through NORAD funding. The students are engaged to work jointly with project stakeholders to understand real life problems in order to seek and implement solutions.

  • Research and development

The project has produced more than 40 dissertations and a large number of journal and scientific conference publications through joint publications with the postgraduate students involved.

  • Software development and innovation

The development and innovation has been around the core DHIS2 platform/mobile customization and improvement, and other built in modules and new applications based on local needs. The following is a list of key innovative open source products has been produced:

    • National DHIS data warehouse (DHIS2) for HMIS with integrated modules for vertical programmes (http://dhis.moh.go.tz/)

    • DHIS2 Trackers for monitoring TB/Leprosy and Child Protection

    • DHIS2 Mobile app for reporting data from health facilities

    • HMIS web portal for open data dissemination (http://hmisportal.moh.go.tz/)

    • Mobile app for data analysis and visualization

    • USSD based mobile integrated diseases surveillance and response

    • National agricultural routine data warehouse (ARDS) (http://ards.go.tz/)

  • Implementation, training, and user support

The implementation of various web and mobile based integrated solutions requires intensive training and sustainable user support at the local and national levels depending on the implementation coverage. Different training approaches and possible of means user support are used which include in-house and offsite. Both DHIS2 and HRHIS have a national wide coverage and are used by all regions, district councils which require regular trainings and user support as well as server maintenance from our project team.

HRHIS sub-project

This HRHIS project was initiated by MoH in 2009 through JICA funding to address the challenges of human resources for health management such as lack of readily available information on staff in service training history and poor quality data on HRH staffing (such as distribution, attrition, migration, retention, absorption, and production). The project focused on the development and implementation of a web based HRHIS software across all councils and regions in Tanzania Mainland. Over time, HRHIS software has gone through various development and improvement processes and the latest version is accessible at: http://hrhis.moh.go.tz/login

Peer Reviewed Publications

Journal Papers

1. Nyella, E and Kimaro, H (2016). “HIS Standardization in Developing Countries: Use of Boundary Objects to Enable Multiple Translations”. The African Journal of Information Systems, Vol. 8(1).

2. Kiwanuka, Achilles, Honest C. Kimaro, and Wilfred Senyoni. "Analysis of the acceptance process of district health information systems (DHIS) for vertical health programmes: a case study of TB, HIV/aids and malaria programmes in Tanzania." The Electronic Journal of Information Systems in Developing Countries 70.1 (2015): 1-14.

3. Ishijima, H., Mapunda, M., Mndeme, M., Sukums, F., & Mlay, V. S. (2015). “Challenges and opportunities for effective adoption of HRH information systems in developing countries: national rollout of HRHIS and TIIS in Tanzania.” Human Resources for Health, 13(1), 48.

4. Abubakar, B. A. K. A. R., et al. "Adoption of Free Open Source Geographic Information System Solution for Health Sector in Zanzibar Tanzania." Journal of Health Informatics in Developing Countries 8.1 (2014).

5. Kagaruki, Gibson, Honest C. Kimaro, and Leonard Mboera. "Factors affecting utilization of evidence based health information system for effective supply chain of essential medicine in Tanzania: A case study from Mbeya Region." (2011).

6. Nyella, E. E. and Mndeme, M. (2010). “Power Tensions in Health Information System Integration in Developing Countries: The Need for Distributed Control”. The Electronic Journal of Information Systems in Developing Countries (EJISDC), 43, 4, pp. 1-19.

7. Kimaro, H. C., and Titlestad, O. H., (2008). “Challenges of user Participation in the Design of a Computer Based System: The Possibility of Participatory Customization in Low Income Countries”. Journal of Health Informatics in Developing Countries, 2008, Vol. 2, pp. 1 – 9 [Electronic Version] from http://www.jhidc.org/index.php/jhidc/issue/view/4.

8. Kimaro, H. C., Mengiste, S. A. and Aanestad, M., (2008). “Redesigning Health Information Systems in Developing Countries: The Need for Local Flexibility and Distributed Control”. Journal of Public Administration and Development, 2008, pp. 18 – 29.

9. Lungo, J. H., (2008). “The Reliability and Usability of District Health Information Software: Case Studies from Tanzania”. Tanzania Journal of Health Research Vol. 10, No. 1, 2008, pp. 39 – 45.

10. Lungo, J. H. and Igira, F., (2008). “Development of Health Information System in Zanzibar: Practical Implications”. Journal of Health Information in Developing Countries, Vol. 2, No. 1, 2008, pp. 24 – 32.

11. Twaakyondo, H. M., Lungo, J. (2008). “Open Source Software in Health Information Systems: Opportunities and Challenges”. Tanzania Journal of Engineering and Technology (TJET), Vol. 2, No. 1, 2008, pp. 36 – 45.

12. Kimaro, H. C. & Nhampossa, J. L. (2007). “The Challenges of Sustainability of Health Information Systems in Developing Countries: Comparative Case Studies of Mozambique and Tanzania”. Journal of Health Informatics in Developing Countries, 1(1), pp. 1 – 10. 2007. [Electronic Version] from http://www.jhidc.org/index.php/jhidc/article/view/3.

13. Kimaro, H. C. and Sahay, S. (2007). “An Institutional Perspective on the Process of Decentralization of Health Information Systems: Case Study from Tanzania”. Journal of Information Technology for Development, Vol. 13 (4) 363-390, 2007.


Conference and Workshop Papers

1. Senyoni, Wilfred, and Jorn Braa. "Boundary Object in HIS: Designing and implementation of a regional scorecard." IST-Africa Week Conference (IST-Africa), 2017. IEEE, 2017.

2. Kiwanuka, Achilles, et al. "A framework for the acceptance process of District Health Information System for vertical health programmes." IST-Africa Conference, 2015. IEEE, 2015.

3. Chu, Anh, et al. "Applying ICT to Health Information Systems (HIS) in Low Resource Settings: Implementing DHIS2 as an Integrated Health Information Platform in Lao PDR." International Conference on Social Implications of Computers in Developing Countries. Springer, Cham, 2017.

4. Bishanga, D. and Kimaro, H.C. (2012) “Mobile Phone Technology: A Gateway to Address Gender Obstacles in Improving Access to Reproductive and Child Health Services by Women and their Partners.” Proceedings of IST-Africa 2012 Conference held in May, 2012 (http://www.ist-africa.org/Conference2012/), in Dar es Salaam.

5. Kimaro, H. C., (2012). “Strengthening ICT based Health Information System (HIS) in Tanzania: The need for HIS policy”. Proceedings of IST-Africa 2012 Conference held in May, 2012 (http://www.ist-africa.org/Conference2012/), in Dar es Salaam.

6. Ngoma, C, Kimaro, H. C. et al. (2012). “Challenges in Implementing a Computerized Name - based Information Tracking System: Practical Experiences from Maternal Health Care”. Proceedings of IST-Africa 2012 Conference held in May, 2012 (http://www.ist-africa.org/Conference2012/) in Dar es Salaam.

7. Pascoe, L., Lungo, J., Kaasbøll, J. and Koleleni, I. (2012). “Collecting Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response Data through Mobile Phones”. IST-Africa 2012 Conference Proceedings, Paul Cunningham and Miriam Cunningham (Eds), International Information Management Corporation (IIMC), 2012, ISBN: 978-1-905824-34-2.

8. Kimaro, H. (2011). “An Information Infrastructure and Institutional Theory Perspective on Decentralization and Sustainability of ICT Based Health Information Systems in Developing Countries: A Case Study from Tanzania”. VDM Verlag Dr. Muller, Germany, ISBN: 978-3-639-21827-5.

9. Mahundi, M., Kaasbøl, J., Twaakyondo, H. (2011). “Health Information Systems Integration: Tapping the Contextual Advantages”. IST Africa Conference Proceedings, Paul Cunningham and Miriam Cunningham (Eds), IIMC International Information Management Corporation, 2011, ISBN: 978-1-905824-24-3.

10. Nyella, E. and Mndeme, M. (2010). “Power Tensions in HIS Integration in Developing Countries: The Need for Distributed Control”. American Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS) 2010 Proceedings, Paper 543.

11.   Lungo, J. et al., (2007). “Implementation of ICTs in Health and Management Information Systems for Zanzibar”. IST-Africa Conference Proceesings; Paul Cannigham and Mariam Cunningham (Eds) IIMC International Management Corporation, ISBN: 1-905824-04-1 pp. 1-7, 2007.

12. Lungo, J. H. & Twaakyondo, H., (2007). “Open Source Software in Health Information Systems: Opportunities and Challenges”. Paper presented at the HELINA Conference, Bamako, Mali. January, 2007.



1. Kimaro, H. (2010). “An Information Infrastructure and Institutional Theory Perspective on Decentralization and Sustainability of ICT based Health Information Systems in Developing Countries: A case Study from Tanzania”, VDM Verlag Dr. Muller, Germany, ISBN: 978-3-639-21827-5, Also available at www.amazon.com.


Grey Literature

MSc. Dissertations

1. A Framework for the Acceptance Process of District Health Information System for Vertical Programmes: A Case of TB, HIV/AIDS and Malaria Programmes in Tanzania, by Achilles Kiwanuka (2014)

2. Application of Geographical Information System in Health Services Management to Support Evidence Based Planning and Decision Making: The Case Study of Kinondoni District in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, by Aleswa Swai (2012)

3. Requirements and Logical Design Specifications for a Mobile Phone Technology Based Reproductive and Child Health System in Tanzania: A Case of Bagamoyo District Hospital, by Dunstan R. Bishanga (20111)

4. Assessment of Management and Utilisation of Evidence Based HIS in the Supply Chain of Anti Retroviral Drugs (ARVs), by Millen Ringo (2012).

5. Establishment of GIS Tool for Visualisation of Immunisation Data in Tanzania: The Case Study of Bagamoyo District in Pwani Region, by Emmanuael Ndilanha (2014).

6. Challenges and Strategies for Improving Use of Health Information for Action Managing District Health Systems: A Case of Eastern Tanzania, by Alfred J. Msasu (2010).

7. Challenges and Strategies for the Design and Implementation of Sustainable Integrated Health Management Information System in Tanzania, by Mathew J. Mndeme (2011).

8. Development of an Integrated Architecture for Vital Registration System in Tanzania: A Case Study of Registration, Insolvency and Trusteeship Agency (RITA), by Jimmy T. Mbelwa (2010).

9. Exploring Barriers to Utilisation of an Integrated Computerised Hospital Information System Among Clinicians at Muhimbili National Hospital, Tanzania: The Case of Jeeva System, by Nolask E. Kigodi (2013). 

10. Effective Use of Logistics Management Information System for Evidence Based Forecasting of Family Planning Commodities Needs: A Case of Medical Stores Department, by Deus Kapinga (2014).

11. Application of Evidence-Based Health Information System for Effective Supply Chain of Essential Drugs in Tanzania: A Case of Rungwe District and Mbeya City, by Gibson B. Kagaruki(2010).

12. Strategies to Improve Data Quality in Reproductive and Child Health Information Systems in Tanzania: A Case Study of Temeke and Kibaha Districts, Tanzania, by Happiness Godlike (2013).

13. Development of Software for Tracking Antenatal Care Defaulters Using Cellphone: The Case Study of Zanzibar, Yusuph Kassim (2012).

14. Integration of Health Information Systems in Tanzania Mainland: Complexities and Approaches, by Masoud Mahundi (2012).

15.  Design of a Community Based Health Information System for Tracking and Monitoring Interventions: Case of New Born and Child Health in Selected Villages in Tanzania, by Gevis Sakwe (2012).

16. Analysing the Process of Integration of Health Information Systems from Technical and Institutional Perspectives: The Case of Immunisation Systems in Zambia, by Patricia Sundaram (2010).

17. Development of ICT Framework for Referral Health System in Tanzania: A Case Study of Kinondoni District, by Irene P. Kahwili (2013).

18. Comparative Analysis of  Health Information System Performance in Selected Public and Private Health Facilities in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, by Zainab Mallya (2014).


Consultancy Reports

1. Kimaro, H., (2012). “Proposal for designing and implementing an electronic integrated diseases surveillance and response system using USSD application”. Funded by CD foundation and MOHSW, 2012.

2. Kimaro, H, Koda, G, Mushi, R, Nangawe, E, & Mndeme, M (2010). “Health Information System Policy Guidelines for the health sector 2011-2031”. A consultancy report prepared for Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and funded by WHO.

3. Kimaro, H., (2009). “Guidelines for Introduction of District Health Information System (DHIS) For Strengthening STI and VCT Information Management in Coast region”. Submitted to NACP/MOHSW in September, 2009.

4. Kimaro, H., (2009). “Proposal for Development of HUMAN RESOURCE for Health Information System Software (HRIS)” submitted to MOHSW, in July, 2009 and received JICA funding from 2009 to-date. 

5. Kimaro, H., (2008). “Proposal for Strengthening M&E for STI and HTC Services through Adoption of DHIS in Coast Region” submitted to NACP/MOHSW on 14th November 2008.


For more information about the DHIS2 projects contact:

Department of Computer Science and Engineering

DHIS2 and HRHIS Project Coordinator: Dr. Honest C. Kimaro

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Mobile: +255758392001