Working with Crossref to register grants

Funders are joining Crossref to register their grants so that they can more easily and accurately track the outputs connected to the research they support.

Looking to join Crossref?

The first step in working with Crossref to register grants is to become a member.

Here’s what it means to be a member. Have a look at the membership terms (and understanding your member obligations), and decide who your account contacts will be. Each contact has a role to play in fulfilling your member obligations and making the most of your membership.

As a member, you will pay a membership fee, and content registration fees for the metadata you deposit with us.

You’re now ready to apply for membership - we look forward to welcoming you! Do let us know if you have any questions.

Ready to register your grants and metadata?

Registering content with Crossref means giving us information about your content (metadata), including a DOI which uniquely and persistently identifies each item of content. We offer you a choice of direct XML deposit methods for you to use to deposit and update your metadata. This section focuses on grant IDs, but you can also register other content types.

Something to consider before you begin

Decide which grants to register first, as you get into the swing of things. For example, pilot a particular country, or area of support. It’s better to start with newly-awarded grants, and then move on to older or long-running awards - these are cheaper to register, and are more likely to have produced research papers, so they’re great for demonstrating the full potential of connected research metadata.

Constructing your identifiers (DOIs)

A DOI is made up of a DOI resolver, a prefix, and a suffix. When you join Crossref as a member, we give you a DOI prefix. You combine this with a suffix of your choice to create a DOI. Although some funders choose to use their internal grant identifier as the DOI suffix, we advise you to make your suffix opaque, meaning that it does not encode or describe any information about the work. Your DOI becomes active once it is successfully registered with us.

Grant landing pages

Your grant metadata records should link to a landing page where you can find information about the grant. Examples:, Should a grant move to a new landing page, the URL in the grant’s metadata is updated to point to the new location. There’s no charge to update metadata for existing deposits.

Formatting grant metadata for registration

Grants can be registered for all sorts of support provided to a research group or individual, such as awards, use of facilities, sponsorship, training, or salary awards. Here’s the section of our schema for grant metadata. If you’re working with a third-party system, such as Proposal Central or EuroPMC, they may be able to help with this piece of work.

You may be able to map your own data and identifiers to our schema. See our example deposit file - this is a full example, and many of the fields it contains are optional, but we encourage you to provide as much information as you can. Rich metadata helps maximum reuse of the grant records you register with Crossref. This .xsd file helps explain what goes into each field, and the parameters (length, format) of what is accepted in each field. Here’s a less techy version.

When you’ve created your XML files, use our checker to test them - this will show any potential errors with your files. For help with resolving problems, send your XML file and the error message to Support.

Uploading your files to Crossref

Once you’re happy with your files, upload them to us using the admin tool, or submit them through HTTPS POST.

Verify your registration, check the submission queue and log, and troubleshoot any errors.

Once your submission is successful, your grant DOIs are ‘live’ and ready to be used. It’s good practice to add the grant DOI to the landing page for the grant, as in this example for

Example grant DOI

Spread the word about your grant identifiers

Let your grant submission systems, awardees, and other parties know you are supporting Crossref grant identifiers, and that they should start collecting these identifiers too. Crossref grant metadata (including grant DOIs) is made openly available through our APIs, so it can be used by third parties (including publishers, grant tracking systems) to link grants to related research outputs.

Page owner: Rachael Lammey   |   Last updated 2020-April-08