ROR, the Research Organization Registry, is operated as a collaborative initiative by California Digital Library, Crossref, and DataCite, in conjunction with a broad network of community stakeholders. Read more about ROR’s governance model, steering group, and community advisory group.
During its first few years, ROR relied on a mixed funding model that included in-kind support from the three ROR governing organizations, contributions from supporting organizations, and grants. In 2022, ROR began transitioning to a resourcing model where all staffing and core expenses will be supported entirely by the three ROR governing organizations. Additional funding from community supporters or future grants will be used to offset operating costs and support time-limited projects. Learn more about ROR’s business model.
The ROR roadmap is available on GitHub.
ROR is freely and openly available to anyone. There is no cost to access and use ROR data and services.
ROR is not a membership organization, so it is not necessary to “join” ROR in order to add or edit your organization’s record in the registry. To ask for a change to your organization’s ROR record or to request that your organization be added to ROR, submit the curation request form.
As a community-based initiative, however, ROR has many channels for participation. Read more about joining the ROR community if you are interested in receiving updates about ROR, participating in strategic discussions about ROR, or volunteering for ROR initiatives.
“ROR” is pronounced exactly like the English word “roar.”
ROR defines “research organization” as any organization that is involved in research. To meet this definition, an organization should be involved in research in one or more of the following ways:
- Producing research
- Funding research
- Employing researchers
- Facilitating research
- Managing research
- Publishing research
- Educating researchers
ROR is primarily focused on identifying and listing global “high-level” organizations that researchers cite as an affiliation. To meet the definition of a “high-level” entity, an organization should have a reasonable degree of independence from any parent or related organizations.
Common types of entities that are in scope for ROR include
- Universities and colleges
- Companies that are involved in research
- Private foundations and government agencies
- Hospitals and healthcare centers
- Research institutes
- Research facilities
Common types of entities that are out of scope for ROR include
- Departments within organizations
- University schools and colleges
- Companies that are not involved in research
- Single-person consultancies
- Pre-collegiate schools
See also our more detailed explanation of ROR’s scope and the criteria for inclusion and the Curator Evaluation Workflow that ROR curators use to determine whether to add a new organization to ROR.
Yes, ROR metadata includes both parent-child organizational hierarchies and lateral relationships between organizations. A university, for example, may have “child” organizations such as research institutes and laboratories as well as “related” organizations such as hospitals and research facilities, and each of these connected organizations may have their own ROR IDs and records. Read our technical documentation about relationships in ROR or read our blog post on “Parents, Children, and Other Relationships in ROR” to learn more.
ROR is focused on solving the problem of connecting research outputs to research organizations while remaining easy to use, and therefore it is not focused on capturing all subdivisions of a given organization such as a university’s schools or departments. ROR does support organizational hierarchy, and units such as research institutes and laboratories are in scope for ROR. The more granular the registry, however, the less suited it is to address the key use case of linking research outputs to research organizations and the more difficult it is to implement and maintain. University departments in particular often emerge, close, combine, and change: the “high-level” institutional information in ROR is more stable and is therefore better suited for persistence. ROR concentrates on maintaining broad, inclusive global coverage of research organizations rather than on capturing the internal structure of particular organizations. ROR might extend its scope in the future, but meanwhile, because ROR’s code and data are entirely open, ROR users are free to build upon it in their local integrations to add their own school- and department-level taxonomies.
A ROR ID consists of a unique 9-character string appended to the ROR domain. The preferred form of a ROR identifier is the entire URL:
https://ror.org/02mhbdp94 rather than
02mhbdp94, although the ROR API will recognize all three of these forms as ROR IDs. The unique strings in ROR identifiers are assigned randomly, not sequentially, and contain no organizational information; therefore, the ROR ID of one organization cannot be predicted from the ROR ID of a related organization.
ROR is more than just an identifier: each record associated with a ROR ID contains useful information about the organization’s name in multiple languages, acronyms, aliases, location, website, Wikipedia page, and other corresponding external organizational identifiers. See the ROR documentation for the full model of the ROR data structure.
ROR is different from other organization identifiers in a few key ways:
- ROR is completely open (CC0 data, open API) and noncommercial.
- ROR is focused on identifying affiliations.
- ROR is designed to be supported in core scholarly infrastructure (e.g., Crossref, DataCite, ORCID).
- ROR is developed as a community initiative.
ROR first launched in 2019 using seed data from Digital Science’s Global Research Identifier Database (GRID), which had been selected as the foundational data source for ROR to start with and then build upon. As ROR began developing its technical infrastructure to support independent management of the registry, we coordinated updates via GRID and kept the two registries in sync while working toward a point of divergence.
In July 2021, GRID announced its plans to sunset its public data and officially pass the torch to ROR. GRID published its final public release in September 2021 and removed its public IDs in July 2022. ROR and GRID officially diverged when ROR published its first independent release in March 2022.
ROR has some overlap with the Crossref Funder Registry because many funding organizations are also included in ROR. ROR IDs map to Funder Registry IDs when one is available. Crossref plans to merge the Funder Registry into ROR at some point in the future, and ROR and Crossref are working closely on this initiative.
ROR is supported and integrated in ORCID in several ways. ROR can be used with ORCID’s API and Affiliation Manager to record research institution identifiers and metadata, and it is the default identifier for affiliations manually added to a user’s record.
Yes, ROR is supported in DOI metadata. Several DOI registrars, including Crossref, DataCite, and the Japan Link Center (JaLC) support ROR in DOI metadata. Read more about how to include ROR IDs in Crossref DOI metadata, how to include ROR IDs in DataCite DOI metadata, and how to include ROR IDs in JATS XML.
ROR is currently being integrated by more than 50 publishers, repositories, funding platforms, and other services. See a list of known current integrations.
The ROR documentation site offers guidance for those integrating ROR in their systems. If you need additional support, reach out via the technical support discussion forum or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
ROR has a REST API that supports retrieving, searching and filtering organization records in the registry. Consult the ROR documentation site for ROR REST API guidance.
In general, ROR IDs should operate behind the scenes, helping systems interoperate: there is usually no need for researchers to know the ROR ID of their institution and no need for institutions to display their own ROR ID. If you do choose to display ROR IDs and/or the ROR logo, please read and abide by our display guidelines. You can also download official versions of ROR logos on that page.
You can check if an organization already has a ROR ID by looking up the organization in ROR’s search interface or API. To suggest that a new research organization to be added to ROR, please submit the curation request form. Before submitting the request, be sure to read about ROR’s scope and criteria for inclusion.
The ROR registry is maintained through a centralized, community-based curation process. Organizations are not responsible for maintaining their own records in ROR. Anyone can suggest a new ROR record or a change to a ROR record via the curation request form, and ROR’s curators will review the request to determine whether to approve it.
ROR is updated on a rolling basis. Every request needs to go through a curation process before it can be incorporated into ROR. We aim to process requests as quickly as possible, but the timelines can vary depending on the complexity of the request and the volume of requests in the backlog. Generally, an approved request will appear in ROR within 2-4 weeks.
Currently, releases are published approximately every month. You can track your request through the curation process by following it on GitHub.
If you have more than one request, please submit a separate request form for each organization/record or create the corresponding issues in our ror-updates GitHub repository. The latter method requires a GitHub account, but it is generally faster to create a GitHub issue than to complete the form. If you have a large number of requests, please contact email@example.com for assistance.
While approved requests for single ROR records generally appear in the registry in 2-4 weeks, it is not possible to estimate a general processing time for bulk requests. Bulk requests range in size from hundreds to thousands of requests, and the completeness and quality of the submitted metadata vary widely.
Bulk requests are processed according to what will benefit the largest number of ROR users. ROR currently receives approximately 300-400 individual submissions per month in addition to bulk requests of various size. We likewise undertake our own, large-scale strategic projects to improve the overall coverage, completeness, and utility of our service. When receiving a bulk submission, we assess it for breadth of coverage, for completeness and quality of the submitted metadata, and for how its processing time would impact all other work. The best way to ensure faster processing of your request is to submit clean, complete metadata.
We are currently scaling our curation processes to support the widespread enthusiasm for ROR and this high volume of requests, so please don’t hesitate to inquire about bulk submissions by writing firstname.lastname@example.org. This helps us to gauge demand for curation activities and resource accordingly. Please also, however, be mindful that large bulk submissions may take us some time to process.
After a request is submitted via the feedback form, an issue will be created in the ror-updates GitHub repository and added to a project board. You will receive an email notification with a link to the GitHub issue associated with your request. You can track the status of the request by following this issue and subscribing to issue notifications.
ROR is updated on a rolling basis. New registry releases are published on GitHub and new data dumps are published on Zenodo approximately once a month. Following the GitHub repository and signing up to watch individual issues is the best way to be notified when a new release is available. Releases are also announced on GitHub, in the ROR Slack, the ROR technical support forum, and on Twitter.