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Last Updated: Oct 15, 2018 12:36 PM

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This database is freely available to the general public via the Internet.


This resource is an index complemented by an open access archive. In other words, some material is freely accessible to all users. Searches may be restricted to open access material only.

PhilPapers (sponsored by the University of London's Institute of Philosophy, the Joint Information Systems Committee, and the Australian National University’s Centre for Consciousness) aspires to be a comprehensive index and bibliography for philosophical works. In addition to indexing books and journal articles, it monitors open access archives and personal pages for articles by academic and professional philosophers. For an introduction see:

Journals monitored are listed at:
Personal pages monitored are listed at:

Full-text articles are accepted for the directory from authors. A contributor can provide links or upload a copy into the open access archive

For detailed general guidance consult the remarkably detailed Frequently Asked Questions

Special Features

From the homepage PhilJobs and PhilEvents may be accessed. The former is a searchable database of jobs. Registered users may upload announcements. The latter identifies meetings, lectures, institutes as well as calls for papers.

Compared to Philosopher’s Index

More current coverage than Philosopher's Index; but not nearly as great in retrospective coverage. For most journals, coverage begins considerably more recently than the earliest volume. Unlike Philosopher’s Index, it indexes unpublished works of high quality. There is also an opportunity to interact with scholars through moderated online forums. Both offer abstracts. Use the two in combination.

Search Tips

For search guidance see:

Users can:

  • Monitor current research by browsing new issues of over 700 philosophy journals.
  • Explore the philosophical literature by using a structured bibliography (see the Table of Contents at the bottom of the homepage) or use a sophisticated search engine. Table of Contents headings are (with subdivisions): Metaphysics and Epistemology; Value Theory; Science, Logic, and Mathematics; History of Western Philosophy; Philosophical Traditions; Philosophy, Msc; and Other Academic Areas.
  • Contribute to research by submitting your work and participating in forum discussions.

Citations may be exported using bibliographic management software, such as EndNote and Xotero.
To find book reviews enter the term “book review” in the Advanced Search query box for “exact phrase.” Advanced Search looks like Google’s Advanced Search and is the preferred engine.


One may search without registering; but with registration full text can be accessed using a library link resolver if activated. In other words, a searcher will be able to access full text we provide directly from the resource. One must register to save a search. Once registered, a user can request that digests of new papers be sent to him. As of 1/1/2014, 60,098 individuals are registered. Registration is free and open to everyone.

Financial Support via Subscription Requested

For an explanation of this see

Contributing to the Open Access Archive

Why a qualified scholar should upload his or her work into PhilPapers:

“It is highly recommended to archive your papers if permitted by the publisher. Not only does this support a transition towards open access publishing, but this significantly increases the accessibility of your work to users without institutional access, be it due to travel, mobile browsing, a lack of affiliation, or just a lack of organization. People often turn around when they hit the "pay wall" even if they could in principle access the article through their institution. In addition, we are currently developing new features such as citation linking and keyword extraction that will allow us to better link archived papers to one another. We cannot apply these techniques to papers for which we do not have the text.”

Dates Covered

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Michael Kicey
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