Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ should answer the most common questions about Columbia International Affairs Online (CIAO). If you have others, please email Herbert Plummer at


How do I search for content on the site?

CIAO is designed so that users may find content in two different ways: using the search bar at the top and using the faceted browsing menu by topic on the left. Think Amazon home page: you can search for a specific item or book if you know the title/author, or you can browse by genre.


How are users authenticated to access CIAO?

Users from your institution can be authenticated by IP address (including EZ-Proxy remote access), referring URL, library card number (public libraries only) or username and password. We also provide user access via  Shibboleth and Open Athens. Contact Herbert Plummer at for more information on user access.


Why can’t I see content on CIAO that I was able to see on the old site?

Many older documents were not in PDF format when we transition to our new site in 2016. Also, CIAO had previously aggregated content that included abstract-only and mixed abstract and full-text. We have discontinued abstract-only content, though selected full-text from some journals remains on the site.


Are full-text ebooks available for download?

Due to author and publisher restrictions, we are unable to offer downloadable versions of our full-text ebooks. However, they are available for reading online.


Do you have a full list of titles for all of the full-text books available on CIAO?

Yes. On the CIAO homepage, beneath the content and metadata facets on the left side of the page, there are links to listings of books, journals, and publishing institutions found on CIAO.


Is CIAO compliant with mobile devices?

Yes, although the formatting will appear slightly different.


How can I check my usage statistics?

Our subscription management system provides usage statistics COUNTER 5 format with available automated delivery via the SUSHI standard. For more information and to get an administrative login, librarians should contact


Do you have marketing materials that we can use to spread the word about the new CIAO?

Yes! We have fliers and brochures. If you would like any, please let us know and we’ll send them to you.


Can I follow you on Twitter?

Yes, please do! You can add our Twitter handle @ColumbiaCIAO on the home page. The site features our live Twitter feed which we tweet from frequently.


Who should I contact if I have questions about CIAO content, or would like to contribute?

Questions on content can be directed to Daniel LoPreto, CIAO Editor, at


Our personnel has changed. Should I let someone know?

Yes! Please email Herbert Plummer at with your most recent and up-to-date contact info so we can keep an accurate database of our customers and the point person at each institution.


I love the site, but can I offer some suggestions?

Of course! Any feedback, criticism, or suggestions are enormously valuable to us. After all, you are the ones using the site. Please don’t hesitate to let us know what you like or dislike about the site. We encourage as much feedback as possible, and will work to take all of your suggestions under consideration as we continue to polish CIAO. Send comments to Herbert Plummer at


What is the subscription period for CIAO?

We generally have a July--June subscription period, but we can make exceptions where necessary.