Watch the Video – FOLIO Codex: The Core Metadata at the Heart of the FOLIO Platform

As a platform for library-centric apps, FOLIO’s approach to metadata involves creating a generalized view of the various types of records (bibliographic, holdings, authority, patrons, etc.) that all FOLIO apps must understand while retaining the detailed records for apps that can understand and make use of that detail. For instance, the app that checks in and checks out physical books does not need to understand the precise nature of the MARC 245 indicators and subfields; it just needs a title to display on the screen to confirm to the operator that the item at hand is the item being checked out. Likewise, an app that counts the usage of a particular thesis does not need to understand the metadata elements that distinguishes a thesis advisor from the degree candidate. This subset of metadata is being called the FOLIO Codex.

This generalized view of metadata enables some unique capabilities in the FOLIO platform.  For instance, the source descriptive metadata record (be it MARC or Dublin Core or MODS or BIBFRAME) can be stored outside FOLIO with the codex record storing just a pointer to where that source record is located.  The FOLIO community calls this “cataloging-by-reference” and we anticipate it will be a more efficient workflow than that used for copy cataloging now.  Another advantage is that many sources of records — from national bibliographic utilities, consortial central catalogs, and local institutional repositories — can coexist in the same FOLIO system.

In this Forum, Kristen Wilson and Lynn Whittenberger will offer an overview of the FOLIO Codex concept and planned implementation.  Vince Bareau, Sebastian Hammer, and Ian Ibbotson then join Kristen and Lynn for a panel discussion answering questions from the Forum attendees and the FOLIO community.


  • Lynn Whittenberger, North Carolina State University
  • Kristen Wilson, North Carolina State University
  • Vince Bareau, EBSCO
  • Sebastian Hammer, Index Data
  • Ian Ibbotson, Knowledge Integration