Skip to Main Content


An overview of Zotero: A free and easy to use citation management tool.

What is Zotero



Zotero is a free open-source citation management tool designed to help you collect, organize, cite, and share your research. With Zotero, you can attach screenshots, PDFs, images, and notes to your citations, create bibliographies from a wide array of citation styles, and share your bibliographies with the Group Library feature.

Zotero Privacy Policy: "Zotero is an open-source project committed to providing the best research tool available anywhere. Our philosophy is that what you put into Zotero is yours, and one of our founding principles is to make sure you remain in control of your data and can share it how you like — or choose not to share it at all. We are an independent, nonprofit organization and have no financial interest in your private information. We fund further development by offering additional online storage space to people who find the software useful, not by selling data." (from Zotero Privacy Policy Overview)

Zotero Data Security: "Zotero was created with the philosophy that your research data belongs to you and should be kept secure and private by default. All Zotero software is open-source and can be audited for security and privacy practices. Unlike many cloud-based tools, the Zotero desktop application is a local program that runs on your computer and saves all research data locally by default. Unless you explicitly set up syncing, your research data never leaves your computer. If institutional policies prevent uploading of data to third-party servers, Zotero can always be used locally without syncing any data, but syncing is required to use group functionality." (from Security of Zotero Data)

About the Author of This Guide

Tiffany C. Esteban created this Zotero guide and updates it regularly. She works as the Digital Humanities Associate at the Humanities and Social Sciences Library West, where she does consultation and instruction sessions focused on digital humanities. She uses Zotero herself and recommends it to students, researchers, and instructors who are looking for a citation management tool that centers their needs, data, and privacy. She also supports those who choose not to use citation management tools in their work for whatever reason.

Zotero Consultant

Profile Photo
Tiffany Esteban
Library West
Gainesville, Florida 32611
University of Florida Home Page

This page uses Google Analytics - (Google Privacy Policy)

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.