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Launched: 2010
Record Updated: Apr 18, 2024
Discovery system
CORE provides access to the world's most used collection of open access research papers, collecting and indexing research from repositories and journals. It is a not-for-profit service dedicated to the open access mission and one of the signatories of the Principles of Open Scholarly Infrastructures POSI.


CORE’s mission is to index all open access research worldwide and deliver unrestricted access for all. In doing so, we:

  • enrich scholarly data using state-of-the-art text and data mining technologies to aid discoverability,
  • enable others to develop new tools and use cases on top of the CORE platform,
  • support the network of open access repositories and journals with innovative technical, solutions and,
  • facilitate a scalable, cost-effective route for the delivery of open scholarship.
  • Technical Attributes

    Open Code Repository


    Maintenance Status

    Actively maintained

    Technical Documentation


    Open Product Roadmap


    Open API


    Open Data Statement


    Content Licensing

    All content accessed through CORE is Open Access

    Standards Employed

    OAI-PMH, ResourceSync, Dublin Core, Rioxx, SOA

    Hosting Options & Service Providers

    Hosting Strategy

    Not applicable

    Community Engagement

    Code of Conduct


    Community Engagement


    Contribution Guidelines or Fora


    Organizational Commitment to Community Engagement

    Too often as researchers we exist within our own disciplines and institutes, each in our own silos, disconnected from each other. The CORE Researcher Network provides opportunities for those working with CORE data to engage and collaborate with others from within and across disciplines. Connecting disparate researchers and research teams to mutually beneficial ends is a key tenet in creating this network. By fostering these connections we can work together to better understand the nature of our own, and other, domains.

    Engagement with Values Frameworks

    User Contribution Pathways

    • Contribute funds
    • Contribute to code
    • Contribute to documentation
    • Other

    Policies & Governance

    Governance Summary

    CORE is a community governed service, governed by an Advisory Board, Board of Supporters, The Open University Stakeholder Group, Research networks representatives, and CORE Leadership and management team.


    Privacy Policy


    Web Accessibility Statement


    Open Data Statement


    Governance Activities

    In Progress

    Governance Structure & Processes


    Transparent Pricing and Cost Expectations


    Additional Information

    Organizational History

    The first version of CORE was created in 2010 by Petr Knoth as part of his PhD work with the aim to make it easier to access and text mine very large amounts of research publications. The value of the aggregation was first demonstrated by developing a content recommendation system for research papers. Since its start, CORE has received financial support from a range of funders including Jisc, the European Commission and for the provision of services to both public and private organisations.

    CORE has been indexing research content from across the world; in 2017, it was calculated that it reached documents from 102 countries in 52 languages. While it has the status of the UK's national aggregator from repositories, it indexes metadata and full-text outputs from repositories and journals from across the world.

    CORE operates as a one step search tool for UK's open access research outputs, facilitating discoverability, use and reuse. The importance of the service has been widely recognised by Jisc, which suggested that CORE should preserve the required resources to sustain its operation and explore an international sustainability model.

    In 2018, CORE said it was the world's largest aggregator of open access research papers. Based on the open access fundamental principles, as they were described in the Budapest Open Access Initiative, its open access content not only must be openly available to download and read, but it must also allow its reuse, both by humans and machines. As a result, there was a need to exploit the content reuse, which could be made possible with the implementation of a technical infrastructure. The CORE project started with the goal of connecting metadata and full-text outputs offering, through content aggregation, value-added services, and by opening new opportunities in the research process.

    In September 2022, Jisc informed the Open University that they will not be able to extend their funding towards CORE beyond July 2023. This triggered a rigorous response from UK HEIs, represented in particular by the United Kingdom Council of Open Research and Repositories (UKCORR), who requested that Jisc “reconsider, and ideally reverse, its decision to suspend CORE’s funding” and stated that an event where CORE becomes financially unviable and is eventually retired “would be disastrous for the reputation of open research in the UK.”

    In response to this situation, on 1st December 2022, CORE launched a voluntary paid Membership Programme for CORE data providers, many of whom are HEIs. By the end of March 2023, 20 HEIs joined this programme including some of the most prestigious, such as the University of Oxford and University of Cambridge. The CORE membership programme has been designed with the goal of providing sufficient income to fully compensate for the loss of Jisc funds; increasing the diversity of income sources and achieving long-term sustainability of CORE.

    Organizational Structure

    Business or Ownership Model

    Fiscal sponsorship (academic institution)

    Full-time Staff



    Primary Funding Source


    Funding Needs

    As of 2023, the annual budget of CORE is around £600k. The cost of CORE is growing due to increases in server infrastructure costs, the growth of OA content and the need to index it, the growth of CORE"s users (currently ~ 30 million per month), and increases in the cost of human resources. The cost of CORE is expected to reach about £1m per annum within the next 5 years.

    CORE, a community governed not-for-profit service, is currently supported by organisations utilising its data services and HEI Members. Membership contributions currently account for about 30% of CORE's income.

    CORE relies on the Open research community to remain sustainable. The CORE leadership, including all of our governance groups, are grateful to our members, paying users and sponsors for financial support.