A Guide to Searching for and using DOI’s in Geological Curator Journal

Simon Harris, GCG Webmaster and Collections Conservation and Digitisation Manager at British Geological Survey, Keyworth UK

As part of an ongoing drive to ensure Geological Curator is the best journal it can be for people working with geoscience collections, we have put large amounts of work into indexing past editions of the journal and users of the website can now benefit from this work when they want to cite materials from Geological Curator in their research.

All new papers published in our journal will include a DOI (digital object identifier) but of course we cannot go back in time and mark DOI numbers on previously printed articles. This guidance note is to help you find retrospectively applied DOIs – the latest version will always be available from the journal section of our website.

If you already know the article you want to cite

If you already know the article title, authors and/or issue details of the journal article you want to reference, and the DOI is not printed in your copy of the journal, then the fastest solution is to use our retrospective DOI lookup list, the latest version of which you will be able to find here:

We then suggest you test the URL provided to ensure that it resolves to the correct article, and then cite it in the manner required for your research. There are plenty of tools available online to help you do this, for example:

If we do not list a DOI next to an article, this is likely to be due to the fact that we are still working through our archive and assigning numbers. In this case, please let us know which article you need a DOI for at journal@geocurator.org and we will try to turn one around for you.

If you are still looking for suitable articles

As part of the process of assigning DOI numbers to our articles, we extracted large quantities of metadata from each issue. This is now searchable at the Geological Curator Journal Search portal:

The search page is very simple to use and there are notes provided to help you. For example, let’s say that I remember reading an article about Mary Anning in volume 4 of the journal. The search criteria shown below should do the job:

And here we are – all papers in volume 4 of the journal which definitely contain the words “Mary” and “Anning” in their text. I could also have used “Mary Anning” which would have found only articles where that specific string occurs in the text.

If we focus in more closely we see that this contains everything we need to cite the paper – from the top left, clockwise, we see:

  • Cover image from the relevant journal (in this case showing an image which was at the time supposed to be Mary Anning on the beach at Lyme Regis, but which is now thought to be William Buckland in Snowdonia!)
  • The position in the printed journal should you have a copy on your bookshelf
  • The DOI we have given to the article. You can cite this number, and it will always take you to the article, such is the power of the DOI…
    • If there is no DOI assigned yet, then as above, you can ask us to assign one
  • An icon indicating that this particular article is available to you under creative commons terms – you can read more about this in our Journal Policy or at the Creative Commons
  • Finally, the bit you all have been waiting for – a link to the article itself – click this and you will be able to download a PDF to enjoy on your computer, tablet or smartphone, or to print out

Finally, eagle-eyed users will have noticed that there are some errors and typos in the excerpt/abstract sections of the search results. This is simply because in many cases, we had to copy and paste text that had been typewritten over 40 years ago, and then run through OCR software – we are correcting this as we see the problems, and have the time. The good news is that the search function has some fuzziness built in and it doesn’t seem to affect the results.

We hope you enjoy using the journal search system – we think it helps to unlock our valuable publication archive. If you have any questions or comments (good or bad), please send them to webmaster@geocurator.org

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