BISG Launches New Working Group on ISNI

Posted By: Brooke Horn Announcements, Committees,

The Book Industry Study Group is pleased to formally announce the launch of a new working group on the adoption of ISNI in the US market, which will operate under the oversight of BISG's Metadata Committee.

"ISNI is the ISO certified global standard number for identifying the millions of contributors to creative works and those active in their distribution, including researchers, inventors, writers, artists, visual creators, performers, producers, publishers, aggregators, and more." —

ISNI provides users with the ability to identify a creator, author, or contributor using a unique 16-digit identifier. An ISNI identifier can be included in metadata and communicated to trading partners looking to disambiguate authors or contributors with the same (or similar) names. An ISNI can also be used to help identify works done by a single author under different names. Effective management of ISNIs is helpful to the workflows of publishers, retailers, and other stakeholders in the book industry. 

The working group's objectives are as follows: 

  • Document ISNI workflow models (assignment, use, maintenance, etc.) established in other countries, accompanied by statements of benefits and applicability to the US market.

  • Recommend one or more approaches to ISNI workflows that would work in the US market.

  • Identify or recruit organizations that can assist in ISNI assignment, use, or maintenance roles across the US market.

  • Publicize the benefits of ISNI in the US market, and promote its use by publishers and resellers

  • Participate in the ISNI-IA Publishers consultation group and represent US publishers and resellers who do not themselves choose to attend


This working group is open to participation from any member of BISG in good standing, as well as nonmembers in relevant segments and industries. If you would like to have a seat at the table and contribute to this important group, we would welcome your participation. Our kickoff meeting for this group is scheduled for Wednesday, March 27 at 2 p.m. ET—we hope to see you there. 

To sign up (BISG members): 

  1. Go to and sign in 
  2. Click on "Profile" in the menu on the left
  3. Scroll down to "Working Group Engagement"
  4. Select "ISNI Working Group" and save 

If you are not a member, simply email Operations Manager Brooke Horn to be added.