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Citing Sources: DOIs

Learn more about why we cite the sources we use, how to cite sources in a specific style, and strategies for avoiding plagiarism.

About DOIs

The following information has been drawn from the International DOI Foundation (IDF) and APA Style Blog.

doi logoA DOI (digital object identifier) is a unique alphanumeric string assigned by the International DOI Foundation to identify content and provide a persistent link to its location on the Internet. The publisher assigns a DOI when the article is published and made available electronically.

DOI numbers start with a 10 followed by a period and contain a prefix and a suffix separated by a slash. The prefix is a unique number of four or more digits assigned to organizations; the suffix is assigned by the publisher and was designed to be flexible with publisher identification standards. The format for DOI in your references: doi:10.xxxx/xxxxx

For more information on the DOI system, consult the Handbook, FAQs and Factsheets from the International DOI foundation.

DOIs are now being recommend in some referencing styles that when DOIs are available you should include them in your citations.

Here is an example of a DOI:

Copyrights and copyfights: copyright law and the digital economy
by Terry Flew; Nicolas Suzor; Bonnie Rui Liu
International Journal of Technology Policy and Law (IJTPL),
Vol. 1, No. 3, 2013
doi: 10.1504/IJTPL.2013.057009

DOIs are usually located on:

  1. the first page (abstract page) of the electronic journal article, near the copyright notice or near the author's address.
  2. the database landing page in the Full Record Display of the article with the field labelled DOI.
  3. the PDF article, DOIs will be located on the cover sheet, towards the top or the bottom of the article.

Can't find the DOI?

Not all publications have a DOI, and not all databases list DOIs where available.

If you are unable to locate a DOI for a publication, you can use the online free DOI lookup on CrossRef simply enter the author’s surname along with the title of the publication in Search on article title and click "Search".

You can also find a publication by using the DOI resolver on International DOI Foundation. Simply enter the doi and click "Go".

CrossRef provides a number of ways to help you locate a DOI. Click the button to search for the DOI.

If you have a DOI and need to find the article information, you can type or paste the DOI into the search box and click Go. Your browser will take you to the publishers web page associated with that DOI.

doi:

 

This tool is drawn from the the web site of the International DOI Foundation.

 
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Thank you to Macquarie University Library for granting us permission to use their DOI page content on their Referencing Guide.