Research identifiers

Why are research identifiers important?

Getting your work published is key: the next step is to make sure others are aware of the progress you are making in your research.  Unique identifiers that are freely accessible enable other researchers to locate and cite your work easily, increasing your personal impact and professional standing.  Standard identifiers are available for researchers and also for book, journal article and data publication as well as for projects and organisations.  

Types of research identifiers

For People: ORCiD

An ORCiD ID is a unique researcher identifier, used worldwide, that you keep throughout your life and retain even if you move institution or change your name.  ORCiD IDs look like a credit card number: 0000-1234-1234-1234.

It is increasingly becoming the method of choice by funders and publishers globally to unambiguously link people to their publications and grants.

You can register for an ORCiD ID or to connect your existing ORCiD ID with the university by using Pure which will ensure that your ORCiD profile is automatically updated when new publications are added to Pure.  Your ORCiD ID will be displayed alongside all of your publications and datasets in the research portal.  

Your ORCiD record is owned and managed solely by you, not the University.  

Getting your ORCiD with Pure

  • Log into Pure
  • Select edit profile
  • Select the Create ORCiD link
  • Read the data transfer description and click proceed
  • Register an account (you will receive a verification email that you must action to complete your registration)
  • Following authorisation you will be redirected to your Pure profile where the ORCiD will now show
  • Remember to save your profile record

For Research Outputs and Datasets: DOIs

A Digital Object Identifier (DOI) is a unique alphanumeric string assigned both to identify an article or other publication uniquely and to provide a persistent link to its internet location.   DOIs are assigned by the publisher when your article is published and made available electronically. They are typically included on the first page of the electronic article, and on any database landing page for that article. If you publish your article through the University, a DOI can be created for it.  For more information, please contact

A Digital Object Identifier can be used to give a persistent link to a dataset (e.g. the underpinning data for an article).  Assigning a DOI to the data is increasingly a requirement within Research Data Management Plans. If you deposit your dataset in Pure, a DOI can be created for it.  For more information, contact

For Books and Journals: ISBNs and ISSNs

The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is a numeric commercial book identifier that is intended to be unique.  An ISBN is assigned to each separate edition and variation (except reprintings) of a publication. For example, an e-book, a paperback and a hardcover edition of the same book will each have a different ISBN.

An International Standard Serial Number (ISSN) is serial number used to uniquely identify a serial publication, such as a journal or magazine.

If you publish your journal or book through the University, an ISBN/ISSN can be assigned to your work.  Please see the section on Publishing through the University for more details.  

For Organisations: ROR - Research Organization Registry

A unique identifier for every research organization in the world.  The University of Portsmouth's ROR ID:

For Projects: RAiD - Research Activity Identifier

A unique identifier for a research project.  Initiated in Australia; work is ongoing to roll the scheme out across the UK.