The Globethics.net library aligns itself within the Open Access movement. As such it wishes to address the problem of skewed access to information between the global South and the global North. The fact that some parts of the world are prevented from participating in the global discourse due to a lack of access to information and knowledge resources is a form of injustice that needs to be corrected.

The Globethics.net library has the ambition to profile itself as a global agent of the Open Access Initiative and as an open repository. As such it does not only take advantage of what has already been developed by others in the open access movement, but encourages it to continue, and wishes to participate in its further development.

At the same time, the Globethics.net library is more than an open access actor, because it also provides to its registered users access to commercial content. This is done, because the global South also needs to have access to content in the field of applied ethics that is only available from commercial publishers. In this respect, the library wants to give preferential access to commercial content to people of the global South who are currently denied such access.


The originality of the library on the landscape of open access repositories and digital libraries stands in the uniqueness of its offer, in terms of open access content (like the electronic versions of until now paper-only journals from the global South; documents submitted through the submission process; open access journals; and the integration of ethics related content from open repositories) in combination with its commercial content. As explained in the Identity part, Globethics.net also provides licensed content to its registered users. All of this content is reassembled in one organized collection of core applied ethics content that is searchable as a whole.

The main priority of the Globethics.net library is to provide full text access to core content in applied ethics to people of the global South and to give the global South an opportunity to make their own research more visible on a global level.

As a second priority, the Globethics.net library also wants to provide auxiliary information and services that contributes towards achieving the main goal of the library. More about the content

Target Groups

The target groups of the Globethics.net library are individuals who are excluded from access to literature on applied ethics for financial reasons, especially in the global South, but also in other countries of the world. The profile of the target groups are people with academic background or involved in academic education who are actively engaged or interested in applied ethical issues in different sectors of society.

Since the main target public of the Globethics.net library is located in the global South, the library ensures that access to knowledge resources is fast, reliable and attuned to global South conditions.


The Globethics.net library strives to achieve the above objectives within the financial, technological and human resources constraints of a not-for-profit foundation that relies mainly on donor fundingMore about financial and human resources...


The Globethics.net Library is an international project and has been created with the assistance of many partners.

Further Development

Globethics.net is committed to improve its functionalities in order to improve the satisfaction of its users. The Globethics.net library has the ambition of becoming a significant actor in the open access movement, and therefore contributes to the evolution of this movement. More about further development...

GlobeTheoLib is the first project worldwide to address strategically the challenge of a more balanced theological knowledge transfer between churches and institutions of theological education in the North and South, East and West, and to provide a common platform for existing digital resources and theological libraries in the world.

GlobeTheoLib is for:

  • Individual users, theological researchers, educators and students 
  • Associations of theological libraries 
  • Theological libraries
  • Associations of theological schools 
  • Churches and specialized ministries 
  • Content providers 
  • Regional ecumenical organizations and Christian World Communions

GlobeTheoLib was initiated by Globethics.net and the World Council of Churches, represented by its programme on Ecumenical Theological Education (ETE), to promote the sharing of expertise in theological research and education, and which is able to counter some of the imbalances at work in the present state of world Christianity and theological education systems worldwide.

Following extensive consultation, the proposal received support from an international workshop in Geneva in September 2010 attended by experts from churches, theological libraries and international organizations. This was followed by the creation of a Consortium for the Global Digital Library on Theology and Ecumenism, of which the World Council of Churches and Globethics.net are the founding institutions. Other members of the Consortium include associations of theological seminaries and of theological libraries, Christian World Communions, and Regional Ecumenical Organizations.

GlobeTheoLib uses the platform of Globethics.net online library, which already holds more than 4,4 millions documents in its Global Digital Library on Ethics, and which has been online since October 2008.
Content for GlobeTheoLib comes from the following main sources:

  • Open repositories: GlobeTheoLib harvests existing Open Access repositories using a list of relevant keywords in several languages.
  • Commercial providers: GlobeTheoLib makes commercial content accessible to individual registered participants in the framework of institutional subscription fees or content purchase through negotiation with publishers.
  • Partner institutions: GlobeTheoLib offers partner institutions the opportunity to submit their own documents to the online library and to build specialized collections.
  • Individual participants: GlobeTheoLib allows registered participants to submit their own documents to the online database.