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Alternative routes to full text

Full-text papers via alternative routes

If full-text access through the University subscriptions is not available several alternatives are available to you. 


  • Kopernio platform has recently been acquired by Clarivate (Web Of Science) and offers a legal access plugin to your browser, for fast on-campus and off-campus access. 
  • Add the extension from to your browser (for Chrome and Firefox) and get notified whether an open version is available.
  • The Open Access Button provides Free, legal research articles delivered instantly or automatically requested from authors.

Search engines

  • Dissemin detects papers behind pay-walls and invites their authors to upload them in one click to an open repository.

Research sharing platforms

  • Maybe the authors you are looking for have a profile on or, where they share their publications. You can create a free account on both platforms to have more and better access. If you find an interesting title, you may try to contact the authors (via the “corresponding author”) and ask for a personal copy. This is allowed under the fair use agreements.
  • Next to the by now well known ArXiv for author versions of articles in the fields of Physics, Maths, and Computer Science, there are now also EarthArXivSocArXiv, in the social sciences, BiorXiv, on Biosciences and engrXiv containing articles on engineering sciences.
  • In this same category, you can find both articles, datasets, images and other resources on FigShare, also here if you create a free account, more options are available.
  • The ScienceOpen platform offers similar options top publish research in an open access fashion.
  • Check, which has a Google Custom Search engine working on repositories, and will give more precise results than a general google search.
  • Go to PubmedCentral, a full-text archive of biomedical and life science articles, used (among others) for providing open access to research funded by NIH and NIH-related organizations.
  • The Internet Archive is the treasure trove for old materials, both scans, audio, and video materials. Scans of beautiful old books and proceedings are online, going back two centuries. Try the WayBackMachine to see old versions of familiar websites.

from the royal dutch library

Pamphlet on how to access via several options online.

Social media

Ask on Twitter with #icanhazpdf .

Ask your library ;-)

And of course, via the library, you can apply for a copy through InterLibraryLoan.