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|This article relies largely or entirely upon a single source. (April 2015)|
HAL is run by the Centre pour la communication scientifique directe, a French computing centre, which is part of the French National Centre for Scientific Research, CNRS. Other French institutions, such as INRIA, have joined the system. While it is primarily directed towards French academics, participation is by no means restricted to them.
Documents in HAL are uploaded either by one of the authors with the consent of the others or by an authorized person on their behalf.
HAL is a tool for direct scientific communication between academics. A text posted to HAL should describe completed research work and should meet current scientific requirements in the field concerned, i.e. the content should be comparable to that of a paper that an investigator might submit for publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal, conference proceedings etc. A document deposited in HAL will not be subjected to any detailed scientific evaluation, but simply a rapid overview, to ensure that it does indeed fall within the category defined above.
An uploaded document does not need to have been published or even to be intended for publication: It may be posted to HAL as long as its scientific content justifies it. But should the article be published, contributors are invited to indicate the relevant bibliographic information and the digital object identifier (DOI).
HAL aims to ensure the long term preservation of a deposited document that are stored there permanently and will receive a stable web address. Thus, like any publication in a traditional scientific journal, it can be cited in other work.
The free online access to these documents provided by HAL is intended to promote the best possible dissemination of research work; the intellectual property remains that of the author(s). Contributors must abide by the rules of good usage prevailing in scientific publications, i.e. respect and citation of original work, no intellectual plunder etc.
A handful of institutions have their own entrance to HAL, called portals e.g. the Arts and Humanities eprint repository, hprints.
C. Berthaud, Open archive (HAL). Direct scientific communication tool, ISKO-Maghreb, 1st International symposium, Hammamet (Tunisie), 13-14 mai 2011