A persistent identifier (PID) is a long-lasting reference to a resource. That resource might be a publication, dataset or person. Equally it could be a scientific sample, funding body, set of geographical coordinates, unpublished report or piece of software.
Whatever it is, the primary purpose of the PID is to provide the information required to reliably identify, verify and locate it. A PID may be connected to a set of metadata describing an item rather than to the item itself.
There are different PID types for different kinds of resources. In the current research environment we most commonly see two varieties: those for objects (publications, data, software) and those for people (researchers, authors, contributors).
- What are Persistent Identifiers and why are they Important? by Jonathan Clark
- Persistent identifiers: current features and future properties by Juha Hakala
- ANDS Guide to persistent identifiers: awareness level
- ANDS Guide to persistent identifiers: expert level
- ANDS Webinar series on persistent identifiers