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What is a DOI? Strengths, Limitations & Components

DOI is short for Digital Object Identifier. It is a unique alphanumeric sequence assigned to digital objects, it is used to identify intellectual property on the internet. DOI’s are usually assigned to scholarly articles, datasets, books, videos and even pieces of software. 

Understanding DOI’s

The digital object identifier is a unique number made up of a prefix and suffix, segregated by a forward slash. 

For example: 10.1000/182

The sequence always begins with a 10. The prefix is a unique 4 or more digit number assigned to establishments and the suffix is assigned by publisher as it is designed to be flexible with publisher identification standards.

Where can I find a DOI?

In most scholarly articles, the DOI should be on the cover page. If the DOI isn’t included in the article, you may search for it on by using the “Search Metadata” function.

How can I use the digital object identifier to find the article it refers to?

  • If the DOI starts with http:// or https://, pasting it on your web browder will help you locate the article.
  • You can turn any DOI starting with 10 into a URL by adding before the DOI. For example, 10.3352/jeehp.2013.10.3 becomes
  • If you’re off campus when you do this, you’ll need to use this URL prefix in front of the DOI to gain access to UIC’s full text journal subscriptions: . For example:

Strengths of Digital Object Identifier

  • Permanent identification: Digital object identifier provides a permanent link to digital content, making sure it remains accessible even if URL or metadata is updated. 
  • Citations: It uniquely identifies research papers, which facilitates accurate referencing and citing.
  • Interoperability: DOIs are widely recognized as they can be utilised across different platforms, databases and systems.
  • Tracking and metrics: DOIs provide key information like publication date, authors, keywords and more. This can be used to track usage metrics, measuring impact and improving discoverability
  • Integration with services: DOIs are integrated with various tools like reference managers, academic search engines, and digital libraries. These mediums enhance the visibility and accessibility of research material with DOIs. 

Limitations of Digital Object Identifier 

  • Cost: Digital object identifiers are costly for smaller organisations or individual researchers. While some services offer free digital object identifier registration for certain content, there may be fees associated with others, particularly for maintenance and updates.
  • Accessibility: There may still be barriers to access for individual researchers or organisations in regions with limited resources. Ensuring equitable access to digital object identifier services and content remains a challenge.
  • Content Preservation: While the sequence provide persistent links to digital content, they do not guarantee the preservation or long-term accessibility of that content. Ensuring the preservation of digital objects linked to DOIs require additional efforts and infrastructure beyond the system itself.
  • Granularity: Sequences are assigned to individual digital objects, such as articles, datasets, or books. However, there may be cases where more granular identification is required, such as specific sections within a larger work or versions of a dataset. Addressing these granularity issues within the digital object identifier system can be complex.

Conduct your research on Zendy today

Now that you’ve gained a better understanding of how DOI works and impacts the world of research, you may begin your search and find your next academic discovery on Zendy! Our advanced search allows you to input DOI, ISSN, ISBN, publication, author, date, keyword and title. Give it a go on Zendy now.

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Learn to use ZAIA – Zendy’s AI Research Assistant

What is ZAIA?

ZAIA – AI Assistant is a domain-specific LLM (Large Language Model) that has been fine tuned with research available on Zendy. ZAIA was designed to make the discoverability and accessibility of academic research simpler on Zendy, while also enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of literature review. In our latest version release, ZAIA has seen significant improvements, these include: 

  • Ask ZAIA: Users and readers can now ask ZAIA specific paper-level questions, introducing a new way to conduct literature analysis.
  • PDF Analysis: ZAIA now has the capability to analyse any PDF. Upload or link a research paper with sections and ZAIA will extract, analyse and summarise each section. 
  • Reference validation and verification: using techniques such as chain of verification, all references go through a validation and verification process to increase accuracy. 
  • Conversation and analysis history: once you log in, you can now see a complete history of all conversations with ZAIA and a history of PDFs analysed.
  • An enhanced fine-tuned model for increased accuracy.
  • ZAIA is also now accessible without registration. 

In this blog, we run you through the various features on ZAIA to teach you to use it to its full potential! 


Step 1: Access ZAIA – AI Assistant through the Zendy home page

Step 2: Once your prompt is solved by ZAIA, you may double check the references ZAIA provides through the “Reference Details” section on the right. 

PDF Analysis

Step 1: To access the PDF analysis feature on ZAIA, switch from “Conversation” to “PDF Analysis” 

Step 2: Enter a research paper of your choice and then click “Analyse document”

Step 3: ZAIA then provides a summary of each section within the research paper, including references so you can quickly grasp the key concepts. 

Conversation History

Step 1: You may access your conversation and analysis history on both pages from the left side bar, simply click on the session you’d like to revisit and ZAIA will load the entire conversation and analysis. 

In this blog, we’ve covered how to conduct PDF analysis on ZAIA, access your history and how to cross-check references. As we further build and improve ZAIA, we look forward to adding helpful functionalities that further accelerate the efficiency and effectiveness of literature review. 

Visit and utilise ZAIA – AI Research Assistant to help you with your next research project.