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Launched: 2012
Record Updated: Apr 18, 2024
Repository service
Repository software
OSF is a free, open-source project management and collaboration tool that supports researchers throughout the entire research lifecycle - from planning, to conducting, to reporting, and discovering research.


Our mission is to increase openness, integrity, and reproducibility of research.

Key Achievements

OSF has surpassed 600,000 registered users, and passed 500,000 in 2022 (currently adding >370 per day). These users representing all domains of science and engineering have registered more than 122,000 studies, created more than 616,000 projects, stored more than 18M files, publicly shared more than 9.1M of those files, and posted more than 125,000 papers. Research consumers do not need to register an account to view and download public content on OSF. The yearly consumer user base is more than 10x the size of the cumulative registered users base with >21 million unique visitors that viewed >54 million files and downloaded ~52 million files in 2022 alone.

OSF has two central differentiators from other tools in the marketplace supporting open science. The first is OSF’s unique, secure, open-source architecture that supports integrations with other tools and services that researchers rely on. OSF connects the phases and contents of the research lifecycle together and enables fluid public and private research management to increase efficiency and reduce time needed for re-uploading, moving, or looking for resources. The second is that OSF supports lifecycle open science. OSF can be used as a retrospective repository to share research data and other assets after the research project is completed. But, its core value proposition is that it supports the researcher from conception through completion, consumption, and re-use. By supporting the entire lifecycle, OSF makes researchers more efficient, makes their work more rigorous, and makes it easier to connect and share some or all of the history and products of the research.

The COS team continually engages with users and stakeholders to understand the ways collaborators, data consumers, and funders need to search and browse the corpus of public research output on OSF. Years of feedback were integrated with new user testing, which focused on discovery features that would provide the most value for researchers. Further analysis determined how users would expect the features to work and how results would be interpreted. Finally, we overlapped this feedback with other stakeholder needs, like funder programs and institutional administrators that are working with research communities to more effectively track and report research plans and results. The result of the community and stakeholder input is a new discovery solution on OSF with a suite of brand new search features, making it easier and faster to find OSF content that meets their precise needs. These same features provide unique insights for institutional administrators, funder program officers, and librarians, including more ways to find relevant funding opportunities and interdisciplinary or inter-institutional collaborations. Most critically the new discovery features, in addition to the robust metadata enabled on OSF, enables researchers and research institutions to meet funder and publisher data sharing commitments.

Technical Attributes

Open Code Repository


Maintenance Status

Actively maintained

Open Product Roadmap

In Progress

Open Data Statement


Content Licensing

Learn more about licensing Available licenses:
  • No License
  • Apache License 2.0
  • Artistic License 2.0
  • BSD 2-Clause “Simplified” License
  • BSD 3-Clause “New”/”Revised” License
  • BSD copyright and license notice in it
  • CC-By Attribution 4.0 International
  • CC0 1.0 Universal
  • Eclipse Public License 1.0
  • GNU General Public License (GPL) 2.0
  • GNU General Public License (GPL) 3.0
  • GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) 2.1
  • GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) 3.0
  • MIT License
  • Standards Employed

  • WCAG AA compliance
  • Hosting Options & Service Providers

    Hosting Strategy

    Hosting through service provider only

    Service Providers

    OSF Hosting OSF is a centrally hosted service on GCP and we offer hosted solutions as a service provider for communities, funders, and institutions.

    What other tools and projects does your project interact with?

  • Datacite and Crossref for DOI registration
  • 11 integrations: Amazon S3, box, Dropbox, figshare, dataverse, Bitbucket, Github, Gitlab, Google Drive, OneDrive, OwnCloud, Zotero, Mendeley
  • Archiving on Internet Archive
  • CEDAR for metadata templates
  • BOA
  • The OSF team also interacts with the research and policy teams at Center for Open Science and with collaborators to inform how OSF supports open science adoption through improved workflows and user experience, as well as informing new open science policies and initiatives that are supported through OSF.
  • Community Engagement

    Code of Conduct


    Community Engagement


    Contribution Guidelines or Fora


    Code License


    Organizational Commitment to Community Engagement

    Communities are the context in which norms for open scholarship are established and evolve, and they are a central component of the Center for Open Science’s (COS) Theory of Change. COS collaborates with communities to create culture change toward research rigor and transparency. By providing infrastructure, training, incentives, and policy solutions, COS empowers community members to work as change agents in setting new norms. See more about community engagement at COS.

    Engagement with Values Frameworks

    Engaged with POSI, provided feedback to continue to iterate to support additional use cases so may become an adopter. NSTC’s guidance on desirable characteristics for federally funded research self assessments here and here.

    User Contribution Pathways

    • Contribute funds
    • Contribute to code
    • Contribute to documentation
    • Contribute to education or training
    • Contribute to working groups or interest groups
    • Other

    Policies & Governance

    Governance Summary

    OSF is a project of Center for Open Science, which is governed by a Board of Directors.


    Commitment to Equity & Inclusion


    Privacy Policy


    Web Accessibility Statement


    Open Data Statement


    Governance Activities

    In Progress

    Governance Structure & Processes


    Additional Information

    Organizational History

    The Open Science Framework was launched in 2012 as part of a graduate student project. The COS launched in 2013 with the support of the Laura and John Arnold Foundation to build and sustain OSF. See history here.

    Organizational Structure

    Business or Ownership Model

    Non-profit organization

    Full-time Staff



    Primary Funding Source


    Funding Needs

    COS is a non-profit seeking to advance a broad mission to increase the openness, integrity, and reproducibility of research through the free and open source tool OSF for researchers. To support our ability to maintain and improve OSF for the diverse global and disciplinary communities of research you can donate here.