Bielefeld Academic Search Engine

BASE (Bielefeld Academic Search Engine) is a multidisciplinary, scientific search engine. It was developed by the University of Bielefeld and the company FAST as part of a strategic partnership and launched in 2004.

BASE is aimed in particular at students and scientists at universities and research institutions. BASE comprises contents of scientific document servers that are made available free of charge via OAI-PMH (Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting) as part of the Open Access movement.

It aims to provide professionally qualified information in conjunction with extensive and high-quality metadata, thus distinguishing itself from commercial search engines.

The search engine, concentrates primarily on Open Access publications, but also records audio, videos and maps, Research data, software etc.

Language English, German, French, Spanish, Polish, Greek, Ukrainian, Chinese

Launched June 24, 2004
Closed No

Developer Universitätsbibliothek Bielefeld

Country of Origin Germany

2004 - [...] Universitätsbibliothek Bielefeld

Topic Academic, Scientific or Educational Search engine

Region No Limitation

Technical functionalities
Search engine for databases, repositories, portals and other closed (deep web) or open content collections
Metadata of selected OAI document servers are integrated via the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH).
In special cases, content from scientific websites is collected by an own web crawler. The full-text data determined here are analyzed for metadata contained.

Used SeEn BASE

Older Version Internet Archive / WebCite

Pieper, Dirk et al. (2006): »The Bielefeld Academic Search Engine (BASE) is a registered OAI service provider which uses the search technology of FAST Search & Transfer and is therefore able to collect and index data from different sources by using the FAST file system import routines, web crawler or specific database connectors. At present, BASE contains principally OAI metadata and in some cases fulltexts from repository servers but it also contains digital text collections, bibliographic data from Springer Publishing and parts of the library catalogue of Bielefeld UL as well as web crawled working papers of the leading German economic research institutes. This lecture comprehends the creating of the design of BASE, the software, technology and search environment used, the incorporation of resources and the possible fields of application. BASE is a highly flexible search engine system and can be used as an institutional repository search service by creating a special view on accordant collections. This means identifying those resources, harvesting the corresponding metadata by using an open source OAI harvester or crawling them by using the FAST web crawler, preparing these data for the search engine index and displaying them in the BASE user interface.« Source

Wikipedia: »BASE (Bielefeld Academic Search Engine) is a multi-disciplinary search engine to scholarly internet resources, created by Bielefeld University Library in Bielefeld, Germany. It is based on free and open-source software such as Apache Solr and VuFind.[1] It harvests OAI metadata from institutional repositories and other academic digital libraries that implement the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH), and then normalizes and indexes the data for searching. In addition to OAI metadata, the library indexes selected web sites and local data collections, all of which can be searched via a single search interface.

Users can search bibliographic metadata including abstracts, if available. However, BASE does not currently offer full text search. It contrasts with commercial search engines in multiple ways, including in the types and kinds of resources it searches and the information it offers about the results it finds. Results can be narrowed down using drill down menus (faceted search). Bibliographic data is provided in several formats, and the results may be sorted by multiple fields, such as by author or year of publication.« Source


BASE is short for Bielefeld Academic Search Engine.

Critical points

Features & Functionality


Example results page for "sand": Source

References & further Publications

Wikipedia (EN):
Wikipedia (Others):

Other Sources

Über BASE (2007) URL:
Content sources (2018) URL:
Pieper D. et al. (2007): BASE - Eine Suchmaschine für OAI-Quellen und wissenschaftliche Webseiten URL:
Find over 400 publications about BASE in BASE URL:
Pieper, Dirk (2006): Bielefeld Academic Search Engine (BASE): an End-user Oriented Institutional Repository Search Service URL:

Created: 2013-02-10