International Identifier for serials
and other continuing resources, in the electronic and print world

ISSN operations




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Which rules govern the ISSN? How is the ISSN Network financed? Who does it work with? Answers to all of your questions.

  • ISSN International Centre Statutes
  • ISSN Network Financing
  • ISSN Network Partners

ISSN International Centre Statutes

The ISSN International Centre is an intergovernmental institution, governed by statutes that member States and associated Members of the Organisation accede to.

These statutes are subject to an agreement between UNESCO and France, the host country for the ISSN International Centre. To read the agreement, please click here  (French version only).

ISSN Network Financing

The ISSN International Centre’s financial resources come from contributions paid by:
– the French government, as the host State of the ISSN International Centre,
– UNESCO, and
– member States.

The General Assembly votes the amount of member States’ contributions every two years. It is calculated based on the gross domestic product of each country.

In addition, the ISSN International Centre has its own resources provided by the sale of its publications and services.

ISSN Network Partners

ISSN Network partners are found throughout the whole process of production, registration, circulation and use of serial publications:
– publishers,
– booksellers,
– union catalogues,
– subscription agencies,
– databases,
– press distributors,
– copyright agencies,
– libraries, etc.

Any ISSN user or any publisher can request that an ISSN be assigned to a serial publication, by contacting the ISSN National Centre concerned or the ISSN International Centre.

A little history…
ISSN was launched and developed under the auspices of UNESCO, as part of the UNISIST programme for worldwide scientific information.
The ISSN Network (known until 1993 under the name International Serials Data System – ISDS) was established formally in 1975.
The first edition of standard ISO 3297 defining ISSN was published at the same time and is revised on a regular basis since then.