Remote Access to ZBW Journals

Login to EconBiz with your ZBW user card number and access ZBW journals via remote access.


  • You have a valid ZBW user card,
  • and: you have a residence in Kiel or Hamburg,
  • or you are studying or teaching at a university in Kiel or Hamburg.
  • You are logged in to EconBiz.

It still doesn't work?

The access to licensed journals is complex. Remote access is not possible for all journals. If you cannot open a certain full text, please visit us at ZBW to access the journal on site and to ask for support at the service desk.

Or you can write to us at We will try to solve technical problems and get back to you.

If you want to report technical problems, please name:

  • your user ID with which you are logged in,
  • the link to the publication in EconBiz,
  • the time of your access,
  • which browser / which device you are using.

Troubleshooting by yourself

(1/5) Are you logged in with your ZBW user card number?

  •  You will find the number on your ZBW user card. It must be entered with eight digits.
  • You cannot access with the temporary X-number that you receive before you collect your ZBW user card.

(2/5) User card expired or blocked?

  • Please renew your card at the ZBW service desk. Bring your id card (alternatively passport + registration certificate) so that your ZBW user card can be extended by one year.
  • If you received the 4th reminder for overdue books and/or have more than 25 € overdue fines, your ZBW account will be automatically blocked. Please return the books and/or pay the fines. Your ZBW user card will then be reactivated.

(3/5) Do you see an "elic" link?

Access is only possible with an elic link. If you move your mouse over the link, you will see the link in full at the bottom left.

(4/5) Try all access options

Try all availability options in EconBiz. Different years / volumes of a journal might be licensed from different providers. Then it is important that you pick the link for the correct period.

(5/5) I have to register again: Could that be?

Yes, sometimes you have to enter your ZBW login again in a HAN login window (see image). If you see other login windows (e.g. with reference to Shibboleth or Athens), you do not need to enter any login data there. Only the HAN registration window is relevant in this context.

Summarized: Frequent reasons why access does not work

  • The journal does not provide remote access via HAN. (Write an e-mail to: We can check this for you.)
  • Incorrect login data: Did you log in with the eight-digit number of your ZBW user card?
  • Your user card has expired. Access is possible again after the renewal at the service desk.
  • There are overdue fines of over 25 € or open reminders for overdue books in your account: Once the fees have been paid, access is possible again.
  • You do not belong to the authorized user groups (see above).
  • The license is not available at your location of the ZBW: Some full texts can only be opened with a Hamburg- or a Kiel user card.
  • Sometimes there are different license periods. If several options for full texts are displayed, try them all. One should lead to the full text you are looking for.

HAN, VPN, Shibboleth, Athens, IP-based: What is all this about?

Publishers distribute scholarly journals under various licenses and protect access to articles that require a license. This often makes the access options very complex and confusing. There are many different combinations of features on which your access depends. It is usually easiest if there is an IP-address-based license for the library and you are in the "right" IP range (e.g. at computers of the ZBW or your university).

Many universities also offer Virtual Private Network (VPN) access. This allows you to dial in from home and the access situation should then look like at the university itself. You should find information on this on the website of your university/library or computer department. Many universities in Germany are also part of the DFN-AAI network, so that you can access licensed articles and books via Shibboleth if you register accordingly.

Ask you library about their remote access options or have a look at their website.

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