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The Common Metadata Framework, published online, is divided into four parts:

  • Part A - Statistical Metadata in a Corporate Context
    Describes the issues surrounding management and governance of statistical metadata system projects.
  • Part B - Metadata Concepts, Standards, Models and Registries
    Clarifies the importance of well-defined, standard terminology. Provides information about relevant concepts, international standards and models.
  • Part C - Metadata and the Statistical Business Process
    Information, best practices and other material, to assist metadata developers in a national statistical office to design and develop a statistical information system that is relevant to business requirements.
  • Part D - Implementation
    Focuses on the experiences of national and international statistical organizations that have recently implemented or re-engineered their statistical metadata systems.

    Each part of the Common Metadata Framework concentrates on different practical and theoretical aspects of statistical metadata systems, and provides vital knowledge for any person working with statistical metadata.


Development of a framework for statistical metadata was initiated by member states at the Joint ECE-Eurostat-OECD Work Session on Statistical Metadata (METIS) meeting in February 2004. Participants concluded that various models, definitions and concepts of statistical metadata had been proposed over the years, and that national statistical offices were missing a common framework to help them build their metadata systems.

This valuable work has been due to the collective input by CES member countries, and coordination efforts of UNECE secretariat staff. As an online publication, it will evolve in line with the field of statistical metadata.

Feedback and suggestions for improvement are encouraged, and can be sent to the UNECE secretariat (

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