Accessing Baker Library

Baker Library’s Special Collections & Archives are open to all researchers, regardless of academic affiliation. For more information, visit our Special Collections & Archive Page.



Baker Library's Stamps Reading Room and Stacks are open to active Harvard ID holders:

  • Faculty
  • Students
  • Staff
  • Harvard Library card holders


Baker Library also welcomes:

  • HBS Executive Education participants: participants may use their room keys to access Baker Library. Participants without room keys: contact before your visit.
  • Staff hired by HBS Research Staff Services: contact before your visit.
  • HBS Online participants: contact before your visit.
  • Researchers using National Endowment for the Humanities materials housed at Baker Library: contact before your visit.


If you do not fall into one of the above categories:

You can apply for library access. Please visit the Harvard Library Visitor Access page for more information.

User categories include (but aren't limited to):

  • HBS/Harvard Alumni
  • Research assistants and library proxies
  • Domestic partners of HBS/Harvard faculty, students, & staff

Harvard Library Visitor Access


Database access:

In addition to physical spaces, access includes the use of many, but not all, of our electronic resources. Please consult our databases page for information on resources available to visitors.

Databases for Visitors

Borrowing Policies

Baker Library’s circulating collection is available for loan to eligible Harvard ID holders. Please visit the Harvard Library Borrowing page for more information on borrowing policies & procedures.

Harvard Library: Borrow, Renew & Return Library Materials

Proxy Accounts

Faculty may sponsor individuals to perform work on their behalf using a library proxy account.

A library proxy can check out materials on behalf of faculty.

Library proxy access to electronic library resources requires both an HBS email address and faculty sponsorship if the individual falls into one of these categories:

  • Contractors, consultants, and less than half time or temporary employees
  • Students or collaborators not affiliated with HBS

Exceptions may apply. Please consult library staff ahead of time for assistance.

Faculty who apply for proxy sponsorship first provide details about the intended proxy, including legal name, then provide details about themselves, and agree to take responsibility for the proxy using the library and materials.

Harvard Library Proxy Access Form

Copyright and Licensing Restrictions

Copyright Restrictions: All users of Baker Library resources must respect the copyrights of works that are accessible through computers connected to the Harvard network. No copyrighted work may be copied, published, disseminated, displayed, performed or played without permission of the copyright holder except in accordance with fair use or licensed agreement. This includes music, movies and other copyrighted material. Harvard may terminate the network access of users who are found to have repeatedly infringed the copyright of others. Students with questions about copyright or this policy are invited to raise those questions with a Reference Librarian. Staff supervisors and members of the Faculty are welcome to call the University's Office of General Counsel.

Licensing restrictions: Electronic resources listed on the Baker Library site are restricted by license agreement to members of the Harvard or Harvard Business School communities, and, in some cases, to on-site users of Baker Library for the purposes of research, teaching, and private study.

Under Harvard's licenses for electronic resources, users generally may not:

  • permit anyone other than authorized users to use the licensed materials
  • systematically download documents from a database.
  • modify or create a derivative work of the licensed materials without the permission of the licensor
  • remove, obscure or modify any copyright or other notices included in the licensed materials
  • use the licensed materials for commercial purposes, including but not limited to the sale of the licensed materials.

Users are individually responsible for compliance with these terms. Vendors sell Harvard Business School access to their databases at rates that reflect a deep discount compared to what a commercial enterprise would pay. Information providers sell us this content on our contractual guarantee that we will use the data strictly for academic or research purposes. 

MBA students may use Baker's licensed databases for their own analysis in support of their academic work (including FGI, independent projects and summer internships*), but must follow these guidelines:

  • In your written communication with colleagues, you may excerpt only insignificant portions of reports, articles, and other documents for distribution to company employees or anyone else (i.e., do not email data, entire documents, or reports to others at the company).
  • Never allow others direct access to Baker Library resources (i.e., do not share your password with anyone).
  • Always attribute accurately and completely all data and excerpts you include in your reports. For recommended guidelines, see Citation Management: Guides & Tools.
  • WRDS does not allow usage with outside organizations, and cuts off MBA access to the database in the summer.

* Some vendors specifically exclude internships in their click-through agreements. Where there is a click-through, please read carefully and refrain from using a resource if your use would violate the terms.

See Also:  Special Collections Copyright and Citations