Getting a DOI at NCAR

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STEP 1: Important Questions

The following questions help to determine whether getting a DOI for your resource is possible.

  • Who is the "publisher" of the resource (e.g. dataset or document)? Is it NCAR/UCAR or another organization? Generally we only assign DOIs to documents published and/or hosted by NCAR/UCAR.
  • Will there be multiple versions of the document? If yes, will you want DOIs for each version, or one for the document overall?
  • Where will the resource be hosted online? Will you post/host it yourself, or would you like it to be hosted by the the NCAR Library (for documents) or an NCAR data archive? If it is already posted, is that the intended long-term location where people will access the resource?
  • If you will host the resource yourself, the resource will need a "landing page" - a web page to which the DOI can point. The landing page should at least have the information about the following:
    1. The resource that is being identified
    2. Information on how to access the resource
    3. Citation format for the resource
  • A DOI must point to a landing page even if the resource (e.g. data sets, software, document) is deprecated or is replaced/superseded.

STEP 2: Prepare Metadata for the Resource(s)

  • All resources registering for DOIs are required to have associated DOI metadata.
  • NCAR/UCP registers DOIs with DataCite, requires DOIs to be registered with metadata about the resource.
  • The required metadata fields are:
    1. Creators
    2. Title
    3. Publisher
    4. PublicationYear
    5. ResourceType
  • The NCAR ad hoc data citation group's recommends filling out as many of the optional fields as possible. Guidance on the individual fields can be found within the following link: DataCite Metadata Schema

STEP 3: Do you have a DataCite account?

  • The NCAR Library has purchased a membership to enable NCAR/UCP to use DataCite's DOI registration services.
  • If you plan to assign a small number of DOIs, the NCAR Library can generate a DOI for you via DataCite.
  • If you plan to assign a large number of DOIs, or want to be able to create DOIs yourself, please contact the NCAR Library at:

STEP 4.1: Contact the NCAR Library

STEP 4.2: Choose the Registration Interface

  • DataCite provides two different interface options for the DOI registration process:
    1. DataCite DOI Fabrica, DataCite’s web-based user interface, allows individuals with valid DataCite credentials to create new DOIs and manage existing ones.
    2. DataCite’s application programming interface (API) permits machine-to-machine transactions, so that functions relating to DOIs could be integrated into other applications or systems and be performed automatically.
  • For further details of DataCite’s process and tools, please refer to DataCite’s Support page.

Additional Information and Resources About DOI


Good Practices for DOIs:

  • Citation Display: DOI landing pages should also display recommended citations for the resource being identified. For examples of data citation formats, please see:
  • User Engagement: DOIs have no purpose if they are not used in citations/references to the associated resource. It is important to engage your user community with information about your resource and the associated DOI. It is also helpful to make it very clear to users how you expect them to reference your resource.
  • Collaborative, Inter-Institutional, and Distributed Projects: In the case that a resource might involve multiple individuals from various research organizations, the project team should coordinate the responsibility and commitment to the assigned DOIs, including the DOI’s metadata content. The discussions among the project team members can also help minimize the unnecessary creation of multiple DOIs for the same resources.
  • Long-Term Responsibility: DOIs are statements of commitment. They are permanent web identifiers, intended to support persistent linking to long-lived scientific resources. Assigning DOIs thus involves a commitment to maintain the resource(s) being identified, and to ensure their long-term accessibility. Developing a concrete plan for this long-term accessibility is essential.


NCAR/UCP DOI Examples:

  1. Data Sets: NCAR Global Climate Four-Dimensional Data Assimilation (CFDDA) Hourly 40 km Reanalysis
  2. Software: NCAR Command Language (NCL)
  3. Facilities: NSF/NCAR Hercules C130 Aircraft
  4. Texts: Data Citations within NCAR/UCP