Contribute Data

Thank you for considering a data contribution to the ISCN database. As of December 2015, over three dozen datasets have been contributed by members of the scientific community and the value of this data resource will only grow with broader participation. Rest assured that any data you submit to the ISCN are protected by a data policy.

Data contributions to the ISCN are ingested using a template with standardized variable names (and some controlled vocabularies). The template consists of individual worksheets in a Microsoft Excel-format spreadsheet file. Depending on the types of data you wish to contribute, you may remove variables (columns) or even entire worksheets.  The files you will need to assemble a data contribution are below:

1. ISCNtemplate.xlsx– Data contribution template

2. TemplateSubmit.pdf– Guide to template structure and variable names

3. TemplateCVs.pdf– Lookup table for variables with controlled vocabularies

4. NEW: R scripts to automate ingestion or harmonization of data products. Read more here

5. Coming soon: synergies with the USGS Powell Center data template

*We recommend contacting ISCN support before preparing a dataset for contribution, in order to discuss important details and to ensure that your time (and ours) is efficiently spent.


ISCN strongly encourages all contributors to assign a DOI to their unique dataset before contribution. A DOI (Digital Object Identifier) is a code used to permanently and unambiguously identify unique digital objects, which facilitates searchability, usability and due accreditation of data. There are many international organizations that issue DOI:s, including PANGAEA, a data publisher for Earth and Environmental Science ( For more information about DOIs visit the International DOI Foundation (


The ISCN data upload portal is presently being redesigned. When finished preparing your data template, please email it to: <>. Thank you!