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What is Crossref?

Crossref is a DOI registration agency. The list of agencies is available on the International DOI Foundation website. A non-profit organisation, Crossref aims to facilitate the identification of digital objects. Although a DOI can be assigned to any type of resource, it is primarily used to identify scientific articles.

Crossref, CC-BY

Services provided by Crossref

In addition to its primary function of assigning DOIs, Crossref offers various services. Some are accessible to all, others are by subscription.

Services available to all

  • Metadata collection : When Crossref members register their content, they send metadata, including the DOI. This metadata, stored in Crossref in a standardised format, is freely accessible and reusable through tools and APIs.
  • Metadata Plus: a fee-based service providing enhanced access to Crossref-supported APIs (OAI-PMH and REST-API) and metadata in XML and Json formats.
  • Link to document: with this service, Crossref allows researchers to access the full text from a reference. This link, in the form of a DOI, is permanent.
  • Register of funders: this register contributes to the transparency of research funding and results. It consists of a register of names of funding bodies. It allows these to be added to the metadata of documents registered with Crossref. Clicking on the name of a funder displays all the articles resulting from the funded research.
  • Event Data: this tool detects data added to blogs, social networks, etc. By providing access to the raw data, it allows users to understand the context in which their research is disseminated.

Services for members only

  • Content registration: Crossref allows members to register DOIs and update their metadata manually or automatically.
Crossref, CC-BY 4.0

Cited-by: this tool shows the reception of the document by the scientific community. It shows the number of citations and links to the citing content. This is the tool that has been implemented in the Mersenne Centre journal sites to visualise the number of citations.

Crossref, CC-BY 4.0

Similarity Check: plagiarism detection tool. Crossref’s tool searches for similarities in a database of several million scientific articles and billions of web pages. It allows editorial teams to ensure the quality of its publications.

Crossmark: this service provides access to the status of the document: has it been corrected, updated or retracted?

How do I get a DOI via Crossref?

Become a member

To obtain a DOI prefix, you must be a member of Crossref. Any organisation that produces professional or academic content can become a member.

Each Crossref member pays an annual subscription fee, the amount of which depends on their income or publishing expenses. Thereafter, a fee is applied to each deposit. These fees vary according to the type of document submitted: book, scientific article, conference proceedings, etc. For example, depositing a scientific article costs $1 ($0.15 for a pre-current year archive plus 2 years).

In practice

There are three methods of submitting metadata to Crossref:

  • use the web submission form
  • send an XML file using the Crossref tool
  • send an XML file using HTTPS POST

For information, Crossref makes its data schema available.

Crossref offers a tool to determine the most appropriate solution:

Crossref, CC-BY 4.0