Uniquely identifying digital research objects

Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) are used to uniquely identify digital research objects, and provide a persistent link to the location of the object on the internet. They also enable citation and tracking of citation metrics.

The ARDC currently delivers DOI services as a member of the global DataCite initiative. The minting service:

  • Is for Australian research organisations or data centres relevant to Australian research, such as those run by Government agencies or Universities.
  • May be used to assign DOIs to data and associated workflows, software, models, and grey literature, provided the citable item has the required metadata.
  • Enables an organisation to maximise the benefits of having their data citations tracked through citation indices.
  • Creates a persistent link that points to the institutional repository or other location as set out in the metadata (see example).

Important note: The ARDC provides the infrastructure to allow minting, resolution and updating of DOIs, it does not manage the DOIs themselves. Processes and policies need to be put in place by those utilising the service to ensure that appropriate maintenance practices underpin persistence.

Essential criteria for assigning DOIs

The essential criteria for resources assigned DOIs are:

  • be part of the scholarly record
  • be persistently available: users of the service need to have the commitment and capacity to ensure continuity of access to their resource
  • have the six mandatory metadata elements from the DataCite Metadata Schema V4.2:
    • Identifier
    • Title
    • Creator(s)
    • Publisher
    • Publication year
    • Resource type general (taken from the list of Controlled Values on Table 3: Expanded DataCite Mandatory Properties of DataCite Metadata Schema V4.2).
    • Note: A value must be assigned to 'resourceTypeGeneral' metadata element when updating DOIs which were minted using versions earlier than v4.0 of the DataCite schema.

If a DOI is not appropriate, please consider using our Handle service to create persistent identifiers for other digital objects or resources such as web services and APIs.

For more information about our criteria please read the DOI Service Policy Statement.

Service scope

Resources and digital objects in scope:

  • research datasets and collections
  • associated workflows
  • software and models
  • grey literature such as theses, reports, unpublished conference papers, newsletters, creative works, preprint journal articles, technical standards and specifications for which the institutional repository is the primary publication point.

Resources and digital objects out of scope:

  • published peer reviewed journal articles
  • ephemera
  • teaching
  • learning materials and book chapters.

Ways of using the service

Web interface

  • This service may be preferred by those institutions expecting to mint only a very small number of DOIs, or as an interim arrangement while a machine-to-machine service is established.
  • Manual minting service can only mint a single DOI at a time. Bulk DOI minting is currently not supported by the manual minting service.
  • Read My DOIs for information on how to manually mint a DOI, update a DOI or view the organisation's activities or profile.

API

  • This service exposes an API for machine-to-machine (m2m) DOI minting. The API can be integrated into research software, data archive systems, workflows and tools, to automate the minting of DOIs.
  • The DOI Service Technical document explains in detail how this service is used.
  • DOI Scripts: Handle client tool developed by Griffith University is available for reuse.

Your DOI toolkit

We've put together a list of handy guides and tools to help you ensure you're always up to date on best practices for using DOIs.