​What is a DOI?

  • DOI stands for “Digital Object Identifier” = a unique, permanent persistent link to information about an object online (such as a journal article, dataset, website, image, etc.)
  • Clicking on a DOI link will take you to a web page where you can find out how to access the object 
  • If the location (URL) where the object is hosted changes over time, the DOI will stay the same, so the object can always be found
  • Example DOI: https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.5778321

Why should I care about DOIs?

  • DOIs are essential to ensuring that the research and scholarly materials that you create and use are FAIR, in line with the FAIR principles:
    • Findable - DOIs make it easier to find research and scholarly works
    • Accessible - DOIs ensure that works can continue to be accessed over time
    • Interoperable - DOIs work together with your ORCID iD to make sure you get credit for your work
    • Reusable - DOIs make it easier to cite and reuse research and scholarly works 

How should I use DOIs?

  • When you are reusing or citing someone else’s work, make sure to include the DOI for the work if available (use the DOI Citation Formatter to create a DOI citation)
  • If an object that you created has a DOI, use it when referencing or sharing your work

How can I get a DOI for an object that I created?

  • Many journal publishers, repository platforms, and research organizations can assign a DOI to your work, either automatically or upon request - check with the organization you are working with to see what their publishing workflow includes
  • FYI, DOIs are usually assigned to objects when they are ready to be shared/published
  • Remember, once a DOI is created it is permanent!

What else do I need to know?

To access a printable/downloadable version of this document, see Google Doc: DOIs 101 for Researchers

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