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Open Access Articles

Articles that have the Open Access padlock logo can be used freely without permission. However, if you re-use figures or other parts of the article you must acknowledge the author and the source of the material. If your article uses more than 25% of an Open Access article or if more than 25% of your article comes from an Open Access article it could constitute duplicate publication and be in contravention of normal publishing ethics.

Articles with the ‘Free’ logo are not the same as Open Access and are subject to the conditions below.

Other Articles

All articles published in Geological Society books and journals that do not have the Open Access padlock logo, including ones that are free to access online, are subject to the conditions below.

Information on using other GSL material including the Geoscientist magazine is at the foot of this page.

Re-publishing material from Geological Society of London copyright

Using material from GSL publications

Extensive quotation (more than c. 100 words) and reproduction of previously published illustrations (even if re-drawn) require permission from the rights holder (GSL in this case). In the UK, material remains in copyright until 70 years after the death of the author.

Material that can be used without permission:

Authors may re-use their own material without permission subject to the exceptions listed below. They may include the whole article in a PhD or other thesis provided that it will not be published, and that the original source is fully acknowledged in the standard form. If the thesis is to be included in the institution’s electronic repository or other online host, authors must use their own finally accepted version, not the typeset PDF (unless it is Gold Open Access). Please also see Copyright Policy and Terms of Use for Authors and Sharing your article. Authors may not re-publish their whole article, or a substantial part of it, without permission. Such permission will be granted only in exceptional circumstances.

Anyone may use up to three items* (text extracts of 100 words or less, figures or tables) from GSL published material without permission or charge provided that a proper acknowledgement of source is used with the item.

*There are no free items if written permission is required from us (e.g. a letter of authorisation or completion of a form) - please use the application form below.

The abstracts of articles can be reproduced without permission or fees provided that a full reference and a link to the article abstract page are included.

Please check that GSL is the original publisher and that the material has not been taken from another source. For a figure that has been modified or re-drawn in a GSL publication the rights are still held by the original copyright holder. In those cases, you must contact the original rights holder.

GSL is not usually the rights holder for cover photographs, and permission must be sought from the owner/photographer.

If your article forms part of a multi-author book, the publisher must ensure that the total number of items from GSL publications does not exceed three (this does not apply to journal issues).

Re-using material in another GSL publication

You may use material from GSL publications in another GSL publication without permission from GSL subject to the exceptions listed below. However, if there are more than three items from an individual article, you must seek the author’s consent directly. If he/she does not respond within four weeks, you can assume that consent is given.


The Geological Society of London has a strong policy against duplicate publication and does not allow republication of whole articles, or substantial parts of them, unless there are very exceptional circumstances.

You may not use more than 25% of any GSL published article in a single publication and no publication should contain more than 25% in total from GSL publications. This does not prevent the inclusion of whole articles in course packs and the like (which do not constitute republication).

You may not post a typeset PDF of a GSL article on any website, repository or server (see Lyell Collection terms and conditions for more information). 

Uses where permission is required

For more than three items, please use Rightslink to obtain permission; there will be a charge of $25 per item. For Fellows of the Geological Society and those unable to use Rightslink, requests must be made using the form below.

If there are more than three items from an individual article, you must also seek the author’s consent. If he/she does not respond within four weeks, you can assume consent. You should contact the author at the address on the original article, or use Google Scholar or other search engine to trace them.

Authors are responsible for ensuring that their mail gets forwarded when they move. For papers published before 1980, a more pragmatic approach can be taken with author consent. If you want GSL to check the authors’ contact details there may be a charge for the service and there is no guarantee that we have the correct address.

Fees for re-publishing GSL material:

  • Processing fee per request: £10 for email requests and replies; £20 when written permission is required (e.g. a letter of authorisation or completion of a form).
  • Item fee for each figure, table or extract: £15 per item (*there are no free items if written permission is needed)
  • 50% discount for GSL Fellows
  • VAT at the standard rate of 20%


Please use Rightslink or download and complete the request form: request form (pdf) or request form (Word).

For enquiries please contact

Using material from journals published by GSL on behalf of other societies

Permission requests for Scottish Journal of Geology (SJG), Proceedings of the Yorkshire Geological Society (PYGS) and Journal of Micropalaeontology (JM) should be addressed to the editor of the journal. Please do not use the GSL request form.

The co-published journals Petroleum Geoscience and Geochemistry: Exploration, Environment, Analysis are handled in the same way as other GSL publications. 

Geology Today is published for GSL and GA by Wiley. Please see their website for permission details.


Use of PDFs

Information on the use of PDFs by others can be found in the Lyell Collection pages.

Authors: Information on the use of PDFs and other versions of your paper can be found on our Copyright and Terms of Use page.

Obtaining a PDF of an article

Non-subscribers should use the Pay-Per-View facility to purchase access to the PDF. Once you have access, you will be able to download and save a copy (for your personal use only).

Authors: Corresponding authors of papers will have received an email with instructions on how to download the PDF. Contributing authors requiring access should contact the corresponding author. We do not provide free access to articles directly to other individuals.

If you are at an institution in a developing country, you might be entitled to free access to the Lyell Collection through the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications. Please see INASP for more information.

Supplementary material

Most supplementary material items on the Geological Society figshare portal at are licensed under the CC-BY license. They are openly available, but an appropriate credit including the authors, title, source link, license link and an indication of any changes made, must be given to the original item in all cases.

For example:

Perdiou, A., Thibault, N., Anderskouv, K., van Buchem, F., Buijs, G. J. A., Bjerrum, C. J. 2015. Orbital calibration of the late Campanian carbon isotope event in the North Sea. figshare, used under a Creative Commons Attribution Licence 4.0

Please visit Creative Commons and Best practices for attribution for more information and guidance.

Datasets on the Geological Society figshare portal are licensed under the CC0 license. Others can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission. The moral responsibility to cite the source remains, as is common in scientific research, although CC0 does not legally require attribution.

Photocopying and digital copying

You may make limited hard copies of an article for your own research or educational purposes (not including course packs) if you have access rights to the material. You do not need to request permission to do this.

For more extensive copying or digital reproduction, you need to obtain a licence from the Copyright Licensing Agency, the Copyright Clearance Center or from your local reproduction rights agency.

Lecture and presentations

You may include material from Society copyright in a visual presentation if you have access rights to the material and provided that you will not circulate digital or hard copies of your presentation. You do not need to request permission to do this.

If you wish to circulate copies of your presentation to students or others, please obtain ‘course-pack’ permission from the Copyright Licensing Agency: or the Copyright Clearance Center: or from your local reproduction rights agency.

Using other GSL material

Permission to reprint material from the Society’s unpublished archives/art collection should be made to the Society's Archivist.

Permission to use material from the Society’s website should be made to the Webteam.

Permission to use material from the Geoscientist magazine should be made to Ted Nield.