ISIDORE is a search engine providing access to digital data from the Humanities and Social Sciences (SSH). Open to all and in particular to teachers, researchers, PhD students and students, it is based on the principles of Linked Data and provides open access to data.
ISIDORE also has a toolkit (ISIDORE on demand) that can be used on request to enrich, categorize and annotate research data using scientific repositories.

ISIDORE is a project of the Very Large Research Infrastructure Huma-Num (CNRS, Aix-Marseille University, Campus Condorcet).

Since 2010, the following organizations have participated in the development of ISIDORE

  • Adonis
  • Antidot
  • Atelier Universel
  • Centre pour la communication scientifique directe
  • Huma-Num
  • Sword
  • Mondéca

What are we implementing?

ISIDORE is a service that collects, enriches and highlights digital data and documents from the Humanities and Social Sciences while providing unified access to them.

ISIDORE "harvests" - this is the accepted term - records, metadata and full text from electronic publications, corpora, databases and scientific news, accessible on the web and offered in open and interoperable standards. ISIDORE harvests data in French (produced in France or in the French-speaking world), English and Spanish.

Once harvested, this information is enriched in three languages (English, Spanish and French) by cross-referencing with professional repositories (vocabulary lists, thesauri, repositories). These repositories are produced either by the scientific community (GeoEthno, Pactols, etc.) or by major institutions in the field of higher education and research (Rameau, LCSH, BNE, Gemet, Lexvo, GeoNames, etc.). Multilingual enrichments allow data to be linked together. This information is entry points to the full text, which is also indexed when possible.

ISIDORE is part of the long tradition of documentary tools made by the SSH for the identification of data sources, be they textual, audiovisual, serial or - since the massive arrival of digital data - complex and hybrid. The importance of citability and of guaranteeing access over time to documents, publications and research objects is particularly crucial in the digital medium, as the Web evolves every day and changes regularly. Multidisciplinary access and the need to reuse research data require powerful tools for data identification and description corresponding to the paradigms of SSH.

The ISIDORE search platform differs from traditional search engines in many ways:

  • Targeted harvesting of metadata and scientific data structured according to international standards and freely accessible on the Web;
  • Indexing of unstructured data (e. g. full text of a scientific article) and structured data (e. g. documentary metadata);
  • Standardization of metadata and data enrichment based on standards recognized in the community;
  • Graphical search interface using the richness of structured data and vocabularies to turn the user into an actor of his/her research;
  • Highlighting of indexed data sources (source catalogs);
  • Provision, according to the possibilities and agreements with data producers, of metadata enriched by the engine following the principles of Linked Data (SPARQL endpoint);
  • Possible integration of the ISIDORE search engine in another environment through the provision of Web APIs (see isidore@huma-num.fr). To do this, this research platform uses different ways of harvesting data, called connectors: OAI-PMH repositories for metadata and data harvesting;
  • News gathering: Calenda, fabula, CNRS, MSH, Universities of Arts and Humanities (RSS, ATOM).

The harvesting can be incremented at will and the engine is updated on average once a month. The various connectors enable a set of metadata to be collected and are entry points to the full text, which is also indexed when possible.

The re-exposure of enriched metadata complies with the principles of Linked Data that movements of making public data available such as data.gov (USA) and data.gov.uk (UK) claim to be based on. ISIDORE participates widely in this initiative and is part of the French plan for Open Science (2018). Besides ensuring the transparency of the actions carried out by the engine to assist in research, ISIDORE thus provides the whole community with the opportunity to constantly enrich its own data.

By its vocation, ISIDORE will foster access to open access data produced by research and higher education institutions, laboratories and research teams: digital publication, documentary databases, digitized collections of research libraries, research notebooks and scientific event announcements.

Since Dec. 8, 2010, ISIDORE is available 24/7.


All the documentation that enables teams, projects or data producers (library, documentation centre, archives) to contribute to ISIDORE is available on https://documentation.huma-num.fr/isidore-en/#how-do-i-get-data-referenced-by-isidore.


Editorial Director:
Olivier Baude (University Professor, Head of Huma-Num)
Project owner and manager:
TGIR Huma-Num
Original Providers:
Antidot, Mondéca, Sword ;
Current Providers:
Antidot ;
Project Leader:
Stéphane Pouyllau (research engineer at CNRS)
Development team:
Adrien Desseigne (engineer at CNRS) ; Bruno Vanderaert (engineer at CNRS) ; Corentin Fragnaud (contract engineer at CNRS) ; Franck Tempia-Bonda (developer) ;
Creation of the Isidore logo:
Jean-Marc Dumont (L'ENDROIT)

They participated in the ISIDORE adventure:

  • Thomas Audot
  • Xavier Auffrey
  • Yannick Barborini
  • Olivier Baude
  • Alain Belvindra
  • Laurent Capelli
  • Loïc Comparet
  • Philippe Correia
  • Johanna Daniel
  • Adrien Desseigne
  • Suzanne Dumouchel
  • Charlotte Faure
  • Gérald Foliot
  • Corentin Fragnaud
  • Hélène Gautier
  • Jean-François Geize
  • Jean-Baptiste Génicot
  • Jean-François Gleyze
  • Benoit Habert
  • Franziska Heimburger
  • Julien Homo
  • Michel Jacobson
  • Adeline Joffres
  • Ines Khoudja
  • Shadia Kilouchi
  • Marion Lachaise
  • Claire Lapassat
  • Yannick Maignien
  • Joël Marchand
  • Léna Marrase
  • Alain P. Michel
  • Jean-Luc Minel
  • Caroline Muller
  • Gautier Poupeau
  • Stéphane Pouyllau
  • Paulin Ribbe
  • Elifsu Sabuncu
  • Franck Tempia-Bonda
  • Bruno Vanderaert
  • Mercedes Volait


The implementation of ISIDORE was financed in 2009 thanks to the French government's recovery plan. Since 2010, it has been financed by the French Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation and the CNRS.


General questions:
To submit databases, news, catalogs:
To add vocabularies: