A DOI (Digital Object Identifier) is a identifier composed by a a combination of digits, letters and signs that uniquely identifies a "digital object" (such as an article in an electronic journal, a chapter in an electronic book, a set of research data, a video, etc.) regardless of its URI, so that if the URI changes, the object still has the same identification and can be accesses using it. It also provides information about the object.
It was created in 1997 as an initiative of the publishers of scientific digital content and, since 1998, it is a project managed by the International DOI Foundation, to facilitate the recognition of the intellectual property of electronic resources.
Its use in academic and publishing circles is widely established. DOIs usually appear at the footer of the electronic documents or in their header.
The DOI is intended to:
- Uniquely identify electronic content.
- Describe digital objects.
- Cite electronic scientific documents.
- Be a stable and permanent link for their location.
CSIC, through its Unit of Scientific Information Resources for Research (URICI), is an institutional member of DataCite and, as a result of this membership, the institutional repository DIGITAL.CSIC assigns DOIs to datasets archived in the repository since 2016 and to preprints and software since 2017. It is not essential that the information is in open access to receive a DOI.
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