Break Through Article Paywalls with Lean Library

Homepage from Project Muse showing Georgetown's Lean Library pop-up box

The Library subscribes and provides access to hundreds of research journals and databases. But if you’re not finding those tools through the Library website, it’s easy to be blocked by a paywall because the publishers don’t know you’re from Georgetown.

We now offer Lean Library to help. Lean Library is a browser extension giving one-click access to Library-subscribed resources. Install the extension, and when you’re on a page where the Library has a subscription, Lean Library will automatically notify you and offer a button for easy full text access.

For example, let’s say you’d like to read an article from The Economist forwarded by a friend. Without Lean Library, you’ll likely hit the Economist’s paywall, even though the Library subscribes. But if you have Lean Library installed, you’ll be able to use the Library’s subscription. After you click the link and arrive on the Economist website, wait for the Lean Library popup to appear, and click “Get Access.” After inputting your NetID (if necessary), you’ll have access to the entire article.

Lean Library will enhance Google Scholar and PubMed searches automatically by adding links to full-text articles available from the Library’s collections. If you hit a paywall on an e-book, the extension will automatically alert you if the Library has access to that e-book in another location. And if an article isn’t in our collection, Lean Library can help you request it through Interlibrary Loan or point you to an open access version if one is available.

Lean Library is a successor to ProxyGU, a bookmarklet developed by the Library in spring 2020 to facilitate off-campus access to Library resources. While ProxyGU continues to be available, Lean Library offers more features and easier access to Library subscriptions.

Read more about Lean Library and find full installation instructions in our Off-Campus Access Guide. The Library continues to actively look for ways to make your remote use of Library collections less frustrating and more fruitful. We welcome your questions and comments at