World Data System (WDS)

The mission of WDS is to promote long-term stewardship of, and universal and equitable access to, quality-assured scientific data and data services, products, and information across all disciplines in the Natural and Social Sciences, and the Humanities.


WDS was created in 2008 at the 29th General Assembly of the International Council for Science (ICSU) in Maputo, with the aim of facilitating scientific research by coordinating and supporting trusted scientific data services for the provision, use, and preservation of relevant datasets, while strengthening their links with the research community. It builds on the potential offered by advanced interconnections between data management components to foster disciplinary and multidisciplinary applications for the benefit of the international scientific community and other stakeholders.

WDS is developing worldwide ‘communities of excellence’ by certifying scientific data services—WDS Members—using internationally recognized standards through the CoreTrustSeal. As of 20 June 2019, WDS has 117 Member Organizations, including 76 Regular Members, 11 Network Members, 11 Partner Members and 19 Associate Members, while a number of other applications continue to be reviewed by the WDS Scientific Committee.

WDS collaborates with several strategic partners, such as the Research Data Alliance (RDA) and the Committee on Data (CODATA).

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