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Structure of the ORCID Identifier

Format of the ORCID iD

The ORCID iD is a URI with a 16-digit number that is compatible with the ISO Standard (ISO 27729), also known as the International Standard Name Identifier (ISNI). Initially ORCID iDs will be randomly assigned by the ORCID Registry from a block of numbers that will not conflict with ISNI-formatted numbers assigned in other ways. ORCID iDs always need all 16-digits; they can not be shortened to remove leading zeros if they exist.

No information about a person is encoded in the ORCID iD. The identifiers were designed to be usable in situations where personally-identifiable information should/can not be shared. Also, since the ORCID iD is designed to be a career-long identifier, no information that can change over a person's career is embedded in the iD, e.g., country, institution, field of study.


The last character in the ORCID iD is a checksum. In accordance with ISO/IEC 7064:2003, MOD 11-2, this checksum must be '0' - '9' though the check digit may also be 'X', a capital letter X, (representing the value 10). You may view the algorithm used below to determine the checksum of an ORCID iD, or you can see it in action using the ORCID Checksum Digit tool.

  * Generates check digit as per ISO 7064 11,2. 
public static String generateCheckDigit(String baseDigits) { 
    int total = 0; 
    for (int i = 0; i < baseDigits.length(); i++) { 
        int digit = Character.getNumericValue(baseDigits.charAt(i)); 
        total = (total + digit) * 2; 
    int remainder = total % 11; 
    int result = (12 - remainder) % 11; 
    return result == 10 ? "X" : String.valueOf(result); 

Issuing ORCID iDs

Only the ORCID Registry can assign ORCID iDs. ORCID iDs are intended to be assigned to individuals and may be secured at no charge. ORCID iDs will be assigned randomly from a block of numbers reserved for this purpose. Typically, ORCID iDs are assigned between 0000-0001-5000-0007 and 0000-0003-5000-0001.

Expressing the ORCID iD

The ORCID iD is expressed as a HTTP URI; the number is proceeded by "". A hyphen is inserted every 4 digits to aid readability.

Storage & Display of the ORCID iD in a database

The ORCID iD should be expressed as a URI: (with the protocol (http://), and with hyphens in the number xxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxx). When displaying the ORCID iD, one may leave off the protocol (https://), provided that the iD (including is hyperlinked to the URI.

Expression of the ORCID iD in the ORCID XSD Schema


Some sample ORCID iDs

Below are some example ORCID iDs with checksums as described above and expressed in the proper format.

      Related resources

      Learn about how the structure for the ORCID Identifier was chosen. Read the Structure of ORCID Identifiers Whitepaper by Geoffry Bilder.

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