Visitor guidelines for the GOAL database

Last updated April 10, 2024

What is the GOAL database?

The GOAL database is the result of the GOAL project (2022 – 2024). GOAL – Unlocking the Green Open Access Potential is a project led by the University Library of the ZHAW – Zurich University of Applied Sciences in close collaboration with four other academic libraries: Hochschule Luzern (HSLU) – Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz (FHNW) – Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK) – Haute École Pedagogique de Fribourg (HEP Fribourg). Twelve other Swiss academic libraries are part of the project's Sounding Board. The project is co-funded by swissuniversities.

The project focuses on promoting Green Open Access among professional journals mainly based in Switzerland by actively supporting them in the adoption and implementation of Green Open Access policies. The database is the result of these efforts.

What is the aim of the GOAL database?

The GOAL database aims to promote (Green) Open Access by increasing the visibility and discoverability of journals with an Open Access policy. We want to support bibliodiversity by focusing primarily on practice-oriented journals based in Switzerland, but our database is also open to all other journals with an Open Access policy.

We also want to make it easier for anyone interested in OA to find information about publishers, journals, and their policies, be they repository managers, publishers, authors or anyone.

What will you find in the GOAL database?

In this database you will find the following information:


  1. Journals that have a (Green) Open Access policy, and the type of policy they have.
  2. Journals which do not (yet) have a policy on self-archiving rights, but which can be contacted for case-by-case consideration.
  3. Journals that were contacted during the project but for various reasons have not developed yet a Green Open Access policy.


You will also find information about the publishers behind the journals. We only provide public information about the publishers. Our aim is to make this information easy to find for database visitors and to provide it in the context of the journals and their policies.


You will find a downloadable copy of the journal policy. You will also find a link to the policy on the journal or publisher's website. We also provide a short summary of the key features of the policy.

How is the GOAL database organized and how can I search for information in it?

The database is organized around three interrelated collections: journals, publishers, and policies. This means two things:

  1. You can search the database by looking for a specific publisher, journal, or type of policy.
  2. As the different collections are interlinked, if you search for a publisher, for example, you will find all the journals and policies related to that publisher.

To perform a search, use the search bar in the database entry screen. To navigate between a publisher, journal, or policy, use the links provided in the extended view.

How can I suggest a new entry (a new policy) or changes in an existing one?

If you want to suggest a new policy or changes to existing information (updated information, incorrect data, etc.), do not hesitate to contact us by using the feedback form. You will find the link at the bottom of the page.

The inclusion criteria for our database are:

  1. The journal must have a self-archive policy, guideline, or indication, be it on the Internet or in the printed version of the journal (f. i. as part of the imprint).
  2. If the journal has no published policy but accepts self-archiving by individual request or has a deal with an academic institution  Send us the details. We will contact you and see if we can offer support in negotiating a policy that applies for everybody.

If you want to suggest a new policy, please provide as much information as possible, using the database as a guide. Most importantly, we need at least the following information:

  • Title of the journal and link to the journal website
  • If it applies: Link to the Open Access policy or CC-license on the website or information where to find the CC-license or the conditions of the secondary publication rights.

Further information is also very helpful because it will speed up the internal review process. It will result in the policy being available much sooner than if we only had basic information.

  • Publisher and link to the publisher website
  • Type of version that can be self-archived at the library’s repository
  • ISSN of the journal (if it has one)

How can I contact the administrators of the database?

Please use the feedback form to contact us.

What is the software used in the database?

The GOAL database is built on DSpace.

Are the contents of the database controlled for quality?

Yes, we do. We check the accuracy of the data before each publication. We also carry out checks throughout the year to ensure that the database is kept up to date. However, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of the data, as you can read in our legal notice. Our aim is to make the information findable.

Do you update and expand the content of the database?

Yes, we do. We add all suggestions that go through quality control. We also check the Internet for new guidelines and in some cases we may even open negotiations with a journal.