About us

We are a distributed team of dedicated people who mostly like to play quizzes, talk about celery (sometimes cucumber), measure coffee intake, and create 100s of custom slack emojis. Our fascination with expired mints has been described as obsessive by some but we prefer to think of it as a passionate hobby. We enthusiastically support the Oxford comma but waver between use of American or British English. Occasionally we do some work to improve knowledge sharing worldwide, which we take a bit more seriously than ourselves.

Take a look at our organization chart.

Our mission

Crossref makes research objects easy to find, cite, link, assess, and reuse.

We’re a not-for-profit membership organization that exists to make scholarly communications better. We rally the community; tag and share metadata; run an open infrastructure; play with technology; and make tools and services—all to help put research in context.

It’s as simple—and as complicated—as that.


Getting the community working together to make scholarly communications better


Structuring, processing, and sharing metadata to reveal relationships between research outputs


Operating a shared, open infrastructure that is community-governed and evolves with changing needs


Engaging in debate and experimenting with technology to solve our members’ problems


Creating tools and services to enable connections and give context

What we stand for

These are the Crossref ’truths’, the principles that guide everything we do. Read our truths page, with full descriptions for each.

  1. Come one, come all
  2. Smart alone, brilliant together
  3. One member, one vote
  4. Love metadata, love technology
  5. What you see, what you get
  6. Here today, here tomorrow

How we started

We started in January 2000 with one employee, Ed Pentz, as Executive Director. Read about our history in Ed’s words. Since we started we’ve grown to (as of 2021) forty one, over 15,000 members, coming from 140 countries.

Read our background story, with an overview of our current services, in this document:

Read or download this background story as a PDF in English, Spanish or Brazilian Portuguese.

Please contact our outreach team with any questions.

Last updated: 2021-February-26