Frequently asked questions

Use and Legal Conditions

You can use MACAU as a publication platform if you are a member of Kiel University (see Charter - Constitution, Statutes - of Kiel University) as an author or editor. In addition, MACAU is open to all scientists and scholars from related academic institutions. At the same time, electronic works are published via the publication platform that have a thematic-scientific connection to the university and its institutions.

In the publication agreement, you as author or editor confirm firstly that you are entitled to make the work publicly accessible via the publication server MACAU. In doing so, you certify that no rights of third parties (e.g. of other authors or editors, of publishers as well as of authors of materials used by them - images or similar) conflict with the electronic publication. Secondly, in the publication agreement you grant the University Library the right of use

  • to electronically store and make publicly available your work, including the description or metadata and abstracts,
  • to transfer the work to third parties for the purpose of long-term archiving and electronic mandatory publication, and
  • for any necessary data migration

This is necessary for the smooth and legally compliant operation of the publication service. It is important that you only grant the University Library the simple right of use. This means that you are free to dispose of your work in any other way (e.g. by making it available to the public) as long as this does not restrict the rights granted to the University Library.

Thirdly, the publication contract states the terms of use under which your work will be published.

The publication agreement is concluded between the authors or editors of the work in question and Kiel University, represented here by the University Library. If several authors or editors are involved in the work, it is possible for the agreement to be signed on behalf of one of the group. By signing, the representative confirms that the agreement of all other participants has been obtained. After receipt of the signed publication agreement, the document is countersigned by a member of staff at the University Library and sent by email to the contact person named in the agreement.

As the copyright conditions and/or licensing terms may differ for each work, it is necessary to conclude a separate publication agreement for each publication.

Before publishing on MACAU, you must clarify whether the authors concerned agree to electronic publication on MACAU. This can be done, for example, by obtaining a written declaration of consent.

It may also be worthwhile to check which licence the materials used are under. This is because some authors have made provision for the subsequent use of their works in principle - without the need to explicitly ask. This is the case, for example, with Creative Commons licences, which transparently state the conditions of use. But beware: even free licences do not exempt you from providing the materials used with a reference to the author. With CC search, for example, you will not only find millions of re-usable licensed image, audio and video documents, but also the necessary source and licence information.

Another way to incorporate external material into your own scientific work without an explicit licence agreement is to use the right of citation. However, this too requires a close look at the limits and the provision of detailed source information. An overview of copyright law in science can be found on the website of the Bundesministeriums für Bildung und Forschung. Helpful information is also provided by the specialist portal (both in german language!).

The possibility of second (retrospective) or simultaneous publication on MACAU, e.g. for the purpose of self-archiving, depends firstly on whether the work meets the formal requirements specified in the guidelines. Secondly, the specific conditions of the first-publishing publisher or journal must be observed in advance of publication at MACAU. If you have not already done so when concluding the publication agreement, the information and, if necessary, the second publication permission must be obtained afterwards. If your work has been published in a periodical collection, you may be able to make use of the so-called Zweitveröffentlichungsrecht. The Board and Senate of Kiel University recommend that all members of the university exercise this right. Further information on the topic as well as some helpful research tools can be found on the pages of the Open-Access-Infopoint Schleswig-Holstein and the Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (both in german language!).

This is possible without any problems on the part of the University Library. The publication agreement does not prevent a second (retrospective) or simultaneous publication as long as the rights granted to the University Library are not restricted. However, the rights of third parties to the work may have to be observed. In addition, with regard to the citability of your academic work, the University Library recommends marking any versions as such and, if possible, use PIDs (persitent identifier). All publications posted at MACAU are provided with a Uniform Resource Name (URN) and, if applicable, a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) by default. Please use these, for example, to link to the MACAU resource from your own website, from other internet portals, from social networks or from your secondary publication.

In line with the Guidelines on promoting Open Access at Kiel University, the University Library is committed to free accessibility and the widest possible dissemination and re-usability of scholarly works. In MACAU, the six current standard licence agreements of the non-profit organisation Creative Commons are available for this purpose. The CC licences are globally recognised instruments with which you can indicate in a self-determined and simple as well as transparent way how far the scope of use of your publication extends. If you choose one of the CC licences, your publication may be shared in any case. All licences also ensure that your authorship remains named and respected. However, not all licence types correspond to the spirit of an open scholarly publishing culture and free cultural works, which, in addition to open accessibility and the possibility of distribution, also provides for usability and modifiability. This only applies to CC BY and CC BY-SA.

Whether and if so, which CC licence you choose for your publication is up to you and may depend on various criteria. A CC licence is not a prerequisite for publication on MACAU. However, Kiel UB explicitly recommends its use - as do a steadily increasing number of research funding bodies and institutions. If you need help choosing the right CC licence, use the Creative Commons Chooser, for example. A good overview is also provided by Creative Commons Australia's 'Know Your Rights' board.

The information box tells you whether the work is licensed under a Creative Commons licence or not. This information makes it clear to you quickly and transparently what possibilities the authors grant the users of the MACAU publication server to use the work - if necessary, even beyond what is generally provided for in the German Copyright Act (UrhG). The exact contractual text of the CC licences with the terms and conditions is linked in the event that they are granted and can be viewed by clicking on the licence symbol. Please also note that certain components of the publication (e.g. illustrations) may be subject to other licence or copyright conditions than those stated in the information box. These materials should be specifically marked in the works (e.g. in captions, in the imprint, in lists of illustrations, etc.).

Form, Formats, Organisation

MACAU is generally designed to be open in terms of format and capable of development. In view of the operation of MACAU and the goal of sustainable storage, common platform-independent and open standard formats are preferred (e.g. PDF). In addition, files stored on the server must not be password-protected or otherwise restricted in use, for example through digital rights management measures.

MACAU is primarily a publication platform for scientific publications. Therefore, the formal orientation is that the posted works should represent as self-contained a contribution to scientific communication as possible. As such, they must also comply with the general and discipline-specific principles of scientific work. The works can be both first and second publications, e.g. for the purpose of self-archiving works already published elsewhere. In the case of second or parallel publications, the specific conditions of the first-publishing publisher or journal may have to be observed.

All works undergo a formal review procedure before publication. Kiel University Library reserves the right to refuse the publication of works that do not meet the necessary requirements, e.g. because

  • the user lacks the legal authority for electronic publication according to the publication agreement
  • the work is not a self-contained and consistent contribution to scholarly communication
  • technical and organisational aspects speak against publication.

However, the standard review process does not include quality control of the content. In addition, the users of the publication server are responsible for clarifying the legal framework of the publication, i.e. any copyright, examination law or patent law issues that may be involved. The staff can at best provide informative support here.

The MACAU team endeavours to make every newly uploaded and formally flawless work publicly available as quickly as possible. Necessary queries or corrections may delay this process. In addition, each publication requires the existence of a signed publication agreement.

MACAU is a publication and archive server. In general, there is no time limit for the provision. The University Library strives to keep the publications usable in the long term.

Subsequent removal of published works from public view and use is only possible for reasons of copyright or examination right and upon written request to University Library. The process is described in the guidelines of MACAU. Please also note that the subsequent deletion of individual components of the work is also excluded due to the archive function of the publication server and the authenticity and consistency of the posted resources. Therefore, prior to publication, consider carefully, for example, the extent to which you need or want to integrate personal data (e.g. CVs) into your work. Minor corrections can be made in the metadata of your work. Please contact the MACAU team for this. If you want to make major changes to your work, you could also consider republishing it.

There is no limit for this at the moment.


By registering and using an ORCID iD (Open Researcher and Contributer ID) you as a researcher can help to ensure that your research achievements can be assigned to you globally and permanently and across different digital systems (publisher homepage, repository, etc.). The e University Board recommends that all researchers at Kiel University use an ORCID iD. To support the non-profit project and to be able to use and offer further technical tools for linking data and systems in the future, Kiel University has been a member of the ORCID DE-Konsortiums since July 2021.

Several versions of your article were created during peer review. Often, however, the final version may not be published on a publication server such as MACAU. When second publishing a journal article, you must therefore specify the publication level of the file submitted to MACAU. The following publication levels are available:

  • Submitted Version: Version before peer review. The first version submitted to a journal for review. Other names:
    • Preprint
    • Author's manuscript
    • Original manuscript
    • First draft
  • Accepted Version: Version after peer review. The final version with all changes, but not yet in publisher's layout. Other names:
    • Postprint
    • AAM
    • Accepted manuscript
    • Author accepted manuscript
    • Accepted author manuscript
  • Published Version: Version after peer review. The final version with all changes and in publisher's layout. Other names:
    • Version of record

Please indicate the title of the review you want to publish on MACAU according to the following style:

Author/Editor (last name, first name): Title. Subtitle of the reviewed work (if applicable). Publisher: Place, year of publication. ISBN (if applicable)