CORE to become an independent Open Access service from August 2023

Jisc and The Open University have had a long-standing relationship delivering CORE ( for over 10 years. During this time, the service has grown from a project to an important and widely used Open Research infrastructure.  

The current Jisc – OU contract for delivering CORE to the open scholarly community is expiring in July 2023. From this time onwards CORE will be operated by The Open University and will no longer receive direct funding from Jisc. The Open University is grateful to Jisc for its support of CORE over the last ten years. 

CORE’s strategy for replacing the income previously received from Jisc will be through the CORE Membership programme, which will be launched later this month. HEIs from around the world that have an open repository and open access publishers will be able to voluntarily support CORE’s operation via a Supporting or Sustaining option and participate on its Board of Supporters. Members of the Board of Supporters will be able to influence CORE’s development roadmap. Additional benefits of participation are listed in our earlier blog post. Institutions are able to register their interest on the CORE website. Jisc are supporting the roll-out of the membership scheme for UK institutions. If you are a Jisc member, you will be able to sign up directly via Licence Subscriptions Manager. 

CORE is a not-for-profit service dedicated to the open access mission. It serves the global network of repositories and journals by increasing the discoverability and reuse of open access content. CORE provides solutions for content management, discovery and scalable machine access to research. CORE services support a wide range of stakeholders, specifically researchers, the general public, academic institutions, developers and funders.

CORE is an enabling open access and open science infrastructure with a mission to aggregate open access research worldwide and deliver seamless access to it for all. In doing so, CORE:

  • supports the network of open access repositories and journals with innovative technical solutions,
  • enriches scholarly data using state-of-the-art text and data mining technologies to aid discoverability, 
  • enables others to develop new tools and use cases on top of the CORE platform, and
  • facilitates a scalable, cost-effective route for the delivery of open scholarship.

As a critical part of the global Open Access infrastructure, CORE is a mission driven not-for-profit endeavour. We will now rely on the generous support of our members to support and sustain the service. 

Liz Bal, Director of Open Research Services at Jisc states: “We encourage institutions to register their interest in CORE Membership on the CORE website and by doing so, make a strong statement of support for CORE’s mission in driving forward open scholarship, as well as benefiting from a range of value-added services.” 

We also invite you to attend a webinar introducing CORE’s Membership and featuring a panel on sustainability of open research infrastructures, which will be held on Tuesday 8th November at 1 pm by UKSG.

6 thoughts on “CORE to become an independent Open Access service from August 2023”

  1. The timing of this abandonment of the CORE service seems inexplicable to me. There is a clear trend in the growing importance of preprints held in repositories in the open-access landscape. It has taken years to get to this point, with CORE playing its part to help establish this. Funders now recognise repositories as authoritative sources of scholarly articles (and, indeed, other resources).

    The need for a reliable and performant aggregation of records – and full text resources – from distributed repositories is, consequently, greater than ever before.

    The CORE aggregation service is held in wide esteem as that rarest of things – a successful, open infrastructure service. Now is not the time to abandon it.

    I would urge Jisc to reconsider this decision.

    1. I would agree, Paul — completely bewildering.

      The TDM aspect of the decision makes it doubly bewildering. Even if all published research was entirely Gold henceforth, institutions are still going to need that content to be aggregated – as well as historical content, which will be disproportionately Green. An aggregator like CORE is the only infrastructure that enables this kind of computational research to take place, or offers a structured open corpus of this immense size and potential. In other words, CORE is too critical to research interests to default to a membership model in order to finance its existence.

      There is certainly a need for funders, research bodies, and digital infrastructure quangos like Jisc to think carefully about open research infrastructure, particularly if they still see UK research as being world leading. The UK has evolved to be one of several de facto leaders in open research thinking and the aforementioned bodies profess to support this leadership. But the decision related to CORE funding does not appear to reflect this, at all.

  2. I agree with all the comments so far. While there are a few aggregators of repositories out there, none can match CORE’s comprehensive scope (global and full text!) and sophistication. Certainly, the TDM aspect covering cross-disciplinary topics is nearly unique. (Semantic Scholar’s corpus is the only other major alternative I can think of).

    The CORE team has been advancing the state of research in the area of Scholarly communications for a decade, and the data they provide is quickly becoming an important core of the open scholarly infrastructure.

    It is one of the sources of services as diverse as,, etc.

    I believe we are at a point in our history, where the level of Open Access has hit a tipping point, and text mining methods are starting to show their power.

    The CORE team has been working in this area and continues to advance research in areas like citation classification and it would be a pity if the lack of funding is an obstacle to further progress.

    While commercial players will certainly move in, it is important there is a non-profit service like CORE to ensure it is not all locked behind expensive or proprietary services.

  3. I sincerely hope that, following this troubling news, a better path forward can be found. CORE is indeed an immensely valuable piece in the puzzle-struggle for Openness and Equality against the unethical paywalling dynamics of the big for-profit players. The membership programme might not be the only solution, but hopefully, the response to it will be positive and plentiful. Beyond that, commitments towards the sustainability of CORE on national and indeed international levels will need to be found, much like for the Internet Archive and other indispensable partners and services.

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