3lib.org, pronounced “freelib”, is a project by the Open Library Society. We improve the access to and the use of freely available scholarly metadata. Most of the records discussed here are already used in the Society’s AuthorClaim service. We are making the records available here for others to use them. The idea is to build over time a large freely available dataset for academic performance evaluation and data mining.
The datasets available here only concern documents, and occasionally, series of documents. Other projects of the society curate datasets about non-documents. They can be obtained at their respective site.
For reasons of efficiency, all data is available via anonymous ftp. If you prefer an rsync solution, contact me, Thomas Krichel.
Most datasets are encoded in a simple XML format called the Academic Metadata Format (AMF).

Datasets by format

native and near-native AMF datasets

Some datasets in AMF are full datasets. They are either native in AMF or they are converted with the intention to create a full representation of the original.

converted AMF datasets

Other datasets in AMF are converted with the intention to feed the data into AuthorClaim. AuthorClaim only needs four basic data elements: the title, handle, author name expressions and link to a web page with further information. I could do a fuller conversion. But I won’t do that until somebody tells me s/he needs it.

Unavailable datasets

Derived data


Oddities and issues

Some identifiers use a start "info:3lib". This is illegal. Processing software should remove the "3". References to items with the "3" will not contain it.


If you want to know more, write to me Thomas Krichel, at krichel at openlib dot org stating the subject “3lib”.

This web/ftp space sponsored by Symplectic, a leading developer of research information management systems. It was previously sponsored by the Open Bibliographic Data Working Group of the Open Knowledge Foundation, and before that by Bibliographic Knowledge Network. This page was last updated on 2011‐12‐20.