LabInform ELN: A lightweight and flexible electronic laboratory notebook for academic research based on the open-source software DokuWiki

26 April 2023, Version 1
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


Scientific recordkeeping is a key prerequisite of reproducibility and hence an essential aspect of conducting science. Researchers need to be able to retrospectively figure out what they or others did, how they collected data and how they drew conclusions. This is typically the realm of laboratory notebooks, and with the advent of the digital era, there is an increasing move towards digitising those notebooks as well. Here, we present LabInform ELN, a lightweight and flexible electronic laboratory notebook for academic research based on the open-source software DokuWiki. Key features are its minimal system requirements, flexibility, modularity, and compliance with auditing requirements. The LabInform ELN is compared with other leading open-source solutions, its key concepts are discussed and full working examples for a spectroscopic laboratory as well as for quantum-chemical calculations presented. The minimalistic system requirements allow for using it in small groups and even by individual scientists and help with improving both, reproducibility and access to the notes taken. At the same time, thanks to its fine-grained access management, it scales well to larger groups. Furthermore, it can be easily adjusted to specific needs from within its web interface. Therefore, we anticipate LabInform ELN and the ideas behind its implementation to have a high impact in the field, particularly for groups with limited IT resources.


electronic laboratory notebook
reproducible research
research data management
FAIR data
knowledge management

Supplementary weblinks


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