If your publication is meant for the public, it is your responsibility to request international identifiers from the Publications Office (see Article 4(3) of Decision 2009/496/EC). This will ensure that your publication is internationally recognised as belonging to an institution/agency/body of the European Union. Your publication will also be included in the EU Publications online catalogue and preserved in an electronic archive.
Identifiers are alphanumeric strings which uniquely identify a given resource. They are linked to associated metadata (i.e. information describing that resource) and as such can be used to identify different formats, language versions, key titles of serials, etc.
Types of identifiers
Several types of publications receive different identifiers, as follows.
- A catalogue number.
This is the Publications Office’s own identifier, used for all publications produced or identified by the Publications Office.
- An international standard book number (ISBN).
This is primarily assigned to monographs (i.e. stand-alone publications).
- An international standard serial number (ISSN).
This is used for the identification of serial publications and ongoing integrating resources including websites (only under certain conditions)
- A digital object identifier (DOI).
This is a permanent digital identifier that provides a stable link to the resource.
See PubliCare to learn more about identifiers (EU Login required).
How to request (and receive) identifiers
You can request identifiers by using the DemPub application (login required) and filling in a request for services. The default services automatically selected when you choose the product will ensure that you receive identifiers. Aside from these defaults, you will be able to request a number of other available services, according to the type of product you are interested in.
After submitting your request, the appropriate identifiers will be assigned to your publication(s), according to the identification rules in force, and you will receive them via email. Your final task will then be to add these identifiers to your publication and then send the Publications Office both a digital version and (if available) two physical copies of your publication, for dissemination and long-term preservation. This final task is also a legal requirement under the decision cited above.
If you have requested additional services, your project will be transferred to an operational team for completion of the services requested. A project manager will then be assigned and will assist you throughout the duration of your production process.
You can read more about here. If you need assistance registering your request for services, please contact the team in charge via their shared inbox (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Identifiers for legal documents
The unique identifier assigned to most documents in EUR-Lex, regardless of the language they are written in.
More information about CELEX numbers can be found at: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/content/help/faq/celex-number.html
- European legislation identifier (ELI).
The unique identifier for national and EU legislation online.
More information about ELIs can be found at: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/content/help/faq/intro.html (point 10) or https://eur-lex.europa.eu/eli-register/about.html
- European case-law identifier (ECLI).
The identifier developed to facilitate the correct and unequivocal citation of decisions from EU and national courts.
More information about ECLIs can be found at: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/content/help/faq/ecli.html
The identifier for acts published in the Official Journal of the European Union (Official Journal).
Example: JOL_2020_414_R_0001 signifies a document published in the L series of the Official Journal, number 414 of 2020, regular edition (R), appearing at number one in the OJ table of contents
This is usually based on internal numbers allocated by different author services.
Example: immc:COM(2020)787 final
- CELLAR ID.
The identifier for the semantic repository of the Publications Office.
If you need more details on the legal document identifiers, please contact the EUR-Lex helpdesk (EURLEX-HELPDESK@publications.europa.eu).
How to display the identifiers
Please consult the Interinstitutional Style Guide for relevant advice on how to display the different identifiers you receive following the internationally accepted rules and conventions.