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Issuance of International Standard Numbers (ISBN & ISSN)

ISBN - stands for the "International Standard Book Number". A 13-digit number that uniquely identifies books and book-like products published national and internationally.

The National Library of Uganda Act, 2003 gives the National Library of Uganda the mandate to allocate International Standard Book Numbers and International Standard Serial Numbers to Authors and Publishers. It is always the Publisher or Author of a book who should apply for the ISBN. The Publisher in this case being a group, organization, company, or individual responsible for initiating the production of a publication.

Here's why you need an ISBN

ISBN are assigned to text-based monographic publications. Any book made publicly available, whether for sale or on a gratis basis, can be identified by ISBN. It's a product identifier used by publishers, book sellers, libraries, internet retailers and other supply chain participants for ordering, listing, sales records and stock control purposes. When used correctly, ISBN allow different product forms and editions of a book or serial, whether printed or digital, to be differentiated clearly, ensuring that customers receive the version that they require; They also facilitate compilation and updating of book directories and bibliographic databases, such as books-in-print catalogs.

How to apply for an ISBN

Authors and Publishers who need ISBN are required to avail basic information about the publication to which the ISBN is assigned. This is referred to as metadata; it includes the Author's name, cover page, editorial page and evidence of payment.

Processing an ISBN takes 1-2 working days after receipt of payment, and the form can be downloaded from this site.