Frequently Asked Questions


What is OARE?

OARE (Online Access to Research in the Environment) is a public-private consortium designed to improve access to scientific research in developing countries by providing high quality, timely, relevant, environmental and related sciences journals and other scientific content for free or at nominal cost.

Who administers OARE?

OARE is coordinated by the United Nations Environment Programme, Yale University, and leading scientific and technical publishers on behalf of its many public and private partners.

When was OARE started?

Band 1 of OARE was launched October 2006. OARE launched Band II in October 2007.

How long will OARE continue?

In July 2006, participating publishers unanimously agreed to continue OARE until at least 2015.

What does Band 1 and Band 2 mean?

The Bands are two groups of countries based loosely on GNI per capita (World Bank figures). Institutions in countries with GNI per capita below $1250 (OARE Band 1) are eligible for free access. Institutions in countries with GNI per capita between $1250 and $3500 (OARE Band 2) are eligible for access for an annual fee of $1,000 per institution per year. Institutions in Band 2 countries receive a free trial-period enrollment of three months.

Who are the partners?

The OARE partners are a diverse group of leading scientific and technical publishers, scholarly societies and associations, multilateral organizations, universities, foundations, and other development institutions working together to help achieve OARE development objectives.


Is it possible to submit journal(s) for inclusion in OARE?

Yes, we are always pleased to provide OARE users with access to new peer reviewed scientific research, monographs and textbooks.

What are the requirements for becoming a partner publisher?

The main requirements for participation are that the journals, books and other related resources contain, all or in part, research that would be of value to professionals or researchers working in at least one of the many environment related scientific fields, broadly defined. Journals, books and other submissions must be available online in their full text version. Please write to us at for further information on submitting your content to OARE.


How can I find out if my country is eligible to participate?

You can consult the list of eligible countries on the eligibility page of our website.

How do you determine which countries are eligible?

The eligibility of a country is based loosely on GNI per capita (World Bank figures, 2006). Institutions in countries with GNI per capita below $1250 (OARE Band 1) are eligible for free access. Institutions in countries with GNI per capita between $1250 and $3500 are eligible for access at a for an annual fee of $1,000 per institution per year. Institutions in Band 2 countries receive a free trial-period enrollment of three months.

Why are the lists of eligible countries based on 2006 GNI data?

OARE eligibility criteria are based on the data available when the consortium was launched in 2006. We recognize that the GNI of any country may change from year to year, and intend to follow developments with regular reviews. We will publicize any changes that are made to the current criteria that might affect your ability to participate in OARE.

Which type of institutions are eligible?

OARE benefits public and non-governmental organizations performing environment-related work. Examples of eligible institutions whose staff and students may have access to the journals are: universities and colleges, professional training schools, research institutes, government offices and agencies, libraries, public media, and local, regional and national non-governmental organizations.

Why are some countries not eligible if GNI is less than US$3500?

The publishers participating in OARE have not, for the time being, extended their offer to countries where they have significant levels of existing subscriptions and, in some cases, local sales staff.


How can I register my institution to use OARE?

If you determine that you meet the eligibility criteria listed on our website, please complete the on-line registration form. Only one registration is required per institution. We will send you instructions for getting started and a license agreement to sign with the terms of use.

I filled out the registration form, can I now access OARE?

Once the OARE staff have processed your completed registration form, you will be contacted and given detailed instructions on how to access and use the system. This usually takes two to three weeks. It is essential that your institution complete all of the fields in the registration form with the information requested. Failure to complete all of the fields in the form will result in delays in processing your application.

Who may use the OARE user name and password?

After the registration process is complete, OARE will send to the Librarian and Director a single password. OARE expects the Librarian and Director to share this password with all faculty, staff and students of the institution so that these individuals can access OARE resources directly. All members -- employees, faculty, researchers, teachers, administrators, staff and students -- of a registered institution, are encouraged to use the shared institution password to access OARE.

What do I do if my institution has been issued a password that has not been shared with all members?

If your institution has been issued a user name and password that has not yet been shared with all members, please write to OARE Program Support at Email: so that we may help ensure you and all others are provided access.

OARE Resources

Is there a list of all of the OARE journals?

If you go to the Journals, Databases and Other Resources page of the OARE website, there is a link to the complete list . This list does not include links to individual journals. To access individual journals, users must do so through the Find Journal drop down menus on the same page.

What if I live in a developing country that is not eligible?

Even if you are not eligible for full access to OARE, there are many free, full-text references listed on our website (see the "Other free collections" section on the bottom right of our journals page). The abstracts of all journals listed on the OARE website are freely accessible to all users. You do not need a username to access these resources.


What equipment do I need in order to use OARE?

In order to get started, you will need a computer connected to the Internet with a high-speed (56k baud rate or higher) connection.

Can I access OARE from a MACINTOSH PC?

If you have Internet access at 56K baud rate or higher, you should be able to access OARE from any computer.

Can OARE help me obtain computer equipment and online access?

Unfortunately, OARE cannot help you obtain computer equipment or online access. However, many OARE users have been able to obtain additional resources from their institutions and/or other local charitable organizations because of this unique opportunity.

I received the password but can not log-in, what do I do?

You may be experiencing various technical problems. Please ensure that you are typing the correct password, if necessary, by cutting and pasting it. If you still can not log in, send a message to


Do you have Searching Tips for using OARE?

Yes, please click on USING OARE section of our website.

Can I access journals in languages other than English?

The option "select journals by language of publication" will give you links to all journals which publish articles in languages other than English.

How can I access a particular journal(s)?

If you know the name of the journal you wish to access, go to the Find Journals by Title section of the Journals, Databases and Other Resources page and click on the letter of the alphabet that corresponds to the first letter of the journal for which you are looking. This will bring you to a list of all journals offered through OARE beginning with that letter. Once you have located the title you are looking for, click the title and you will go directly to the journal’s home page. You can also search for a specific journal by title, by author or by subject by using the corresponding drop down menus available on the left hand side of the same page.

Can I search for articles on specific subjects?

Detailed searches for articles on a specific topic can be accomplished by using OARE's search tools(A&I; databases) available under the DATABASES AND ARTICLE SEARCHING drop down menu on the Journals, Databases and Other Resources page. You can use SFX links to open full text articles not only in EBSCO’s Environment Index, but also in CSA’s Environmental Science and Pollution Managent.

Can I make suggestions to OARE for finding a journal?

Yes, we encourage you to send suggestions that will help us to improve OARE. The purpose of OARE is to serve its participants. The more feedback we receive from you, the better the system will be able to meet your information needs.

Can I download complete journal issues or books?

No. You may not download complete journal issues or books. However, you may download and save limited numbers of articles or chapters from any one journal issue or book, not to exceed 15% of the issue or book.

Are back issues available online?

Many of the journals do offer access to back issues. However, the journal site content, including the policy on back issues, is determined by each publisher and will vary accordingly.

Can all members of a qualified institution access OARE?

All members—employees, faculty, researchers, teachers, administrators, staff and students--of a registered institution, and its visitors, are eligible to access OARE.

Can I access OARE outside of my institution?

Users may access journals from computers or other digital installations owned by or under the direct control of the institution and from personal computers owned personally by the institution’s employees, faculty or students. These computers can be located both inside and outside the registered institution. If a member of your institution encounters a special problem or has a unique need, please let us know immediately so we can work with you to ensure appropriate access is given.

Does OARE maintain statistics on system use?

OARE maintains statistics on system use. The individual publisher partners maintain statistics on the use of their publications.

Can we supply students with OARE publications for courses?

Academic and teaching staff may make copies in print or digital form of articles for course packs. If the copies are supplied in digital form, these electronic copies must be deleted from the university server at the end of the semester.

Other Initiatives

What are HINARI and AGORA? Are they part of OARE?

HINARI (Health Internetwork Access to Research Initiative), managed by the World Health Organization, and AGORA (Access to Global Online Research in Agriculture) managed by the Food and Agriculture Organization and Cornell University, are separate initiatives that coordinate closely with OARE and focus on providing scientific literature in the medical and agricultural sciences, respectively.

How can my institution gain access to HINARI and AGORA?

You can find information on how to register for HINARI and AGORA on their respective websites.


Are there other initiatives for accessing online journals?

In addition to OARE, HINARI and AGORA there are other programs which allow users from developing countries to access online journals free or low-cost. They include the Programme for the Enhancement of Research Information (PERI) managed by the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP); Electronic Information for Libraries (eIFL) ; the Ptolemy Project , and the Free Access to Developing Economies program from HighWire . You may find more information on the Other Initiatives section. In addition, on the journals page, the "Other Free Collections" section includes links to journals available free to all users.


Where do I send news and stories about OARE in my institution?

Please send stories to If you read about OARE in your local newspaper, or organize a workshop and take pictures of OARE users, please send us the information so we can post them on our website.

Do you have an information sheet?

Yes, you can download or read online the four-page OARE information sheet posted on our Homepage and on the About OARE page.

Lux ET Veritas Logo UNEP Logo