The DOAJ Seal

The DOAJ Seal is awarded to journals that demonstrate best practice in open access publishing. Around 10% of journals indexed in DOAJ have been awarded the Seal.

Journals do not need to meet the Seal criteria to be accepted into DOAJ.

There are seven criteria which a journal must meet to be eligible for the DOAJ Seal. These relate to best practices in long-term preservation, use of persistent identifiers, discoverability, reuse policies and authors' rights.


All seven criteria must be met for a journal to be awarded the Seal. Failure to maintain the best practice and standards described in these criteria may lead to removal of the Seal.

  1. Digital preservation (Archiving policy)
    • The journal content must be continuously deposited in one of these archives:
      • any archiving agency included in Keepers Registry
      • Internet Archive
      • PubMed Central
  2. Self-archiving (Repository policy)
    • Authors must be permitted to deposit all versions of their paper in an institutional or subject repository.
      • Preprint
      • Author's Accepted Manuscript
      • Published article (Version of Record)
    • An embargo may not be applied.
  3. Persistent article identifiers (Unique identifiers)
    • Articles must use persistent article identifiers. DOI, ARK or Handle are the most commonly used.
    • All persistent links must resolve correctly.
  4. Metadata supply to DOAJ
    • Article metadata must be uploaded to DOAJ regularly.
  5. License type
    • The journal must permit the use of a Creative Commons license that allows the creation of derivative products.
      • CC BY
      • CC BY-SA
      • CC BY-NC
      • CC BY-NC-SA
  6. License information in articles
    • Creative Commons licensing information must be displayed in all full-text article formats.
  7. Copyright and publishing rights
    • Authors must retain unrestricted copyright and all publishing rights when publishing under any license permitted by the journal.

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Version history

This is Version 1 of our Seal criteria.