International Standard Name Identifier

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International Standard Name Identifier (ISNI) "is a draft ISO Standard (ISO 27729) whose scope is the identification of Public Identities of parties: that is, the identities used publicly by parties involved throughout the media content industries in the creation, production, management, and content distribution chains." [1]

It is the result of the former project International Standard Party Identifier, having changed name and scope of itself. Furthermore in a 2008 ISMN manual "International Standard Name Identifier" is related to object, not party nor name identification.

As the result of that, the project will not lead to a replacement for the current IPI because an IPI identifies a party not one of the names of that party.

"An ISNI is made up of 16 decimal digits, the last one being a check character." (Yes they write character, see

Example: ISNI 1422 4586 3573 0476

FAQ: "An ISNI is made up of 16 digits, the last character being a check character. The check character may be either a decimal digit or the character “X”."

FAQ [2]: Public identities are identified by the following metadata elements:

  • Name of the Public identity
  • Date and place of birth and or death (or registration and dissolution for legal entities)
  • Class and Roles as defined by the RA. Classes defines the repertoire (such as Musical, Audio-Visual, Literary,..) and Roles can be Author, Performer, Publisher,..
  • Title of reference to a creation
  • A URI (or URL) providing a link to more detailed information about the Public Identity.


Since 2014-08-03 the http interface supports linking by ISNI.

See also ISNI in


2008 ISNI definition by ISMN

ISNI is on the top of the ISO system to identify texts, recordings and audiovisual works. [3] p.36

These identifiers marked with * relate to URN, NBN and DOI.