We instantly, legally find you access to the articles and data you need. We're trying to make paywalls a thing of past and share all research data, one request at a time.

It all started when two students got tired of hitting paywalls. Instead of accepting their frustration, they became inspired and took an idea to track the impact of paywalls to a hackday. Together with volunteer developers the Open Access Button was launched in November 2013.

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How it works

Finding free, legal, full-text articles

Before we create a request to the author we check that an article is not already legally available somewhere else. Our sources include all of the aggregated repositories in the world.

  • oaDOI
  • Share
  • CORE
  • OpenAIRE
  • Dissem.in
  • Europe PMC
  • BASE
  • Our goal is to link you directly to full text. We've had great results, but sometimes there are mistakes. If you find an error, report it here.

    Making more articles and data available

    When an article or dataset isn’t available we ask the authors to share it. We help authors share fast, legally and widely so that not only you get access - but everyone does, forever! The end result is no more paywalls and the data you need at your fingertips.

    Requests made through our system are public so others can join your request to motivate authors and we can hold them accountable. We believe authors should share, whenever possible. Research is publicly funded, and sharing is at the heart of the scientific method.

    We put articles in Zenodo and data in the Open Science Framework for safe keeping.

    Built by

    Joe McArthur

    Co-Founder and Lead

    London, UK


    Mark MacGillivray

    Lead Developer

    Edinburgh, Scotland


    Chealsye Bowley

    Communications and Advocacy Director

    Florida, USA


    Sarah Melton

    Development Assistant

    Boston, USA


    Natalia Norori

    Request Manager

    Costa Rica


    Alexandra Giannopoulou

    Communications Volunteer

    Paris, France


    Allana Mayer

    Copywriter and Communications Assistant

    Toronto, Canada


    And you?

    We're always looking for passionate, skilled people to join the team.
    Get in touch!

    Alongslide active team members, many have come and gone from the project. Thanks to Jisc, Open Society Foundations, Center for Open Science, and others for their support.

    The Open Access Button is supported by SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coaltion). SPARC is a global coalition committed to making Open the default for research and education. SPARC empowers people to solve big problems and make new discoveries through the adoption of policies and practices that advance Open Access, Open Data, and Open Education. Previously, we were incubated by Medsin.

    Get in touch

    We'd love to hear from you! We can be found on our blog, Twitter, Facebook and GitHub - or say hello via email at hello@openaccessbutton.org.