The IMS library is part of the Main Library of the University of Dar Es Salaam and is the Ocean Information Centre for Tanzania; therefore plays a key role in facilitating ocean and coastal research in the country. The library collaborates closely with the Regional Co-operation of Scientific Information Exchange in the Western Indian Ocean (RECOSCIX-WIO) located at the Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute in Mombasa, which is the Regional Dispatch Centre.
The IMS library inherited all publications that were deposited by EAMFRO (East African Marine and Fisheries Research Organization). On top of the inherited library materials the library has acquired many new books, journals, reprints, reports and different reference materials from different sources.
The library has a collection covering a wide range of subjects including fisheries, aquaculture, marine research and expeditions, legislating, oceanography, socio-economics, coastal zone management and marine resources. Most of the periodicals are acquired through an exchange programme with other organizations and donation from Book Aid (UK).
Through the assistance of various donors and the University of Dar Es Salaam main library the IMS library, under the Program for the Enhancement of Research Information (PERI) has access to electronic journal services.