OpenURL is a type of URL that directs users to content on the internet, specifically in libraries and other information repositories. It contains both the item’s identity and the address of an OpenURL website, called a resolver, which locates the item’s physical location. Created by the National Information Standards Organization (NISO) and delivered to the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC) in 2006, it has become a popular tool for linking to resources in libraries.
Link resolving services like SFX are often used interchangeably with OpenURL. SFX, originally a part of the “Special Effects” project by Belgian librarians, was later acquired by Ex Libris.
OpenURL provides a persistent identification of resources regardless of their location, similar to a permalink, making it a valuable tool for libraries and researchers alike.
What is a link resolver?
A link resolver is a tool that connects users to full-text articles, books, and other materials that may be available through their library’s subscriptions.
How does OpenURL benefit libraries?
OpenURL simplifies the process of linking to library resources and ensures that users are directed to the appropriate full-text versions, even if they are located in different databases or platforms.
What organizations use OpenURL?
Many academic and research libraries use OpenURL, including the Online Computer Library Center, JSTOR, and ProQuest.
Overall, OpenURL is a powerful tool for linking to resources in libraries and ensuring seamless access to information for researchers.