What is grey literature?

Grey literature is a catch-all term for any information not produced or distributed by commercial or academic publishing bodies. It therefore includes a wide range of information types including, but not limited to, research summaries, case studies, white papers (policy documents) and conference proceedings.

Inadequate preservation and discoverability of grey literature have been identified as a great hindrance to evidence-based decision-making across multiple disciplines; research papers alone are often not enough to fully inform real-world applications that must consider location-specific natural and cultural history, policy and society. The same frustrations are voiced by researchers and practitioners in the field of ecology where there is an evident ‘gap’ between research and practice.

AER aims to bridge this gap by serving as an applied ecological database for both journal-published research and grey literature. All resources in AER are permanently archived, given a citable identifier and made discoverable through tagged keywords, topics and other metadata.

What do we accept?

In short – anything.

Any materials that relate to the management of ecological resources are welcomed on AER whether they be new or confirmed discoveries, failed or successful project reports, legal information or data that have relevance at local, regional, national or international scale.

How does grey literature get on AER?

Archiving and preserving information is a membership benefit of AER; representatives from member organisations can upload content. Visit the membership page to find out how your organisation can become a member of AER and discover the benefits different membership tiers can provide.

Once a membership organisation uploads their documents, the in-house editorial office performs routine checks before transferring the documents to CABI where they are permanently archived and indexed.

Once fully processed, grey literature will become searchable on AER when it launches fully later in 2020 along with research articles and other information types. All uploaded documents will be displayed with relevant metadata including the member organisation name, logo, contact details, names of authors and an abstract or summary.