Service and Membership Workflows

These workflows set out a process in which an ORCID member (e.g. a scholarly society or membership organization) can integrate with the ORCID API. It gives a walkthrough of the process of collecting authenticated ORCID iDs from your members or the people you work with, retrieving data from their ORCID records, adding their affiliations with your organization to their ORCID records, and updating records which you have previously added.

These workflows are applicable to any organization interested in acknowledging membership affiliations, or recognizing non-employment/volunteer activities, such as committee membership, board membership, society officers, editors, and visiting staff, by adding information about their contributions to their ORCID record.  

What do service and membership assertions contain?
Workflow 1: Collecting with ORCID up front using registration systems
Workflow 2: Linking with ORCID retrospectively
Periods of service


Our API v.3  expands the set of affiliation activities that can be expressed within an ORCID record.  In addition to employment and education affiliations, ORCID users and members can also add membership and service activities (see below), as well as qualifications, and invited positions and distinctions.  

For example, membership organizations such as scholarly societies can recognize your members and those who donate time and expertise; funders can recognize your board members; publishers can recognize editorial boards and conference organizers can recognize your planning committees.  

This is great news for committee members, panel experts, advisory boards, and others who would like to be able to share information about their work and expertise with others, and to be publicly recognized for it.

These new forms of affiliation  appear on an ORCID record like this:

What do service and membership assertions contain?

The Service section of an ORCID record can be used to recognize people in many roles: standards bodies, expert panels, editorial boards, study groups, conference organizers, conference panel chairs, committee work, project work, volunteer society officers, elected board positions, and more.  Organizations commissioning peer review can also recognize ongoing activities such as serving on a review panel (as well as adding information about individual reviews using our peer review workflow).  

The Membership section is intended to be used to indicate paid or gratis membership of a society or association (for honorary positions please use the Invited Position section instead -- see the affiliations technical documentation).

All affiliation sections use the same set of metadata (*indicates a required field):

  • Organization name*
  • Organization city*
  • Organization region
  • Organization country*
  • Organization ID (Ringgold, GRID or LEI)*
  • Role/Title
  • Department (e.g. working group name)
  • URL (e.g. working group webpage)
  • Start date
  • End date
  • An external persistent identifier describing the affiliation 


There are two generalized workflows for adding affiliation assertions: by collecting ORCID iDs on registration, or by emailing existing users and asking them to connect their iD to your system.  Both have three components: authenticate, connect, and display.

Workflow 1: Collecting iDs up front using registration systems

In this scenario, ORCID iDs are a requirement of registration, for example, when joining a society/renewing a membership, or when joining a board or panel.  When registering their details via a web form, registrants are asked to authenticate their ORCID iD and grant your organization permission to interact with their record.  Once their registration is approved, your system updates the appropriate section of the individual’s ORCID record with details of their membership or service activities, connecting them with your organization. Their ORCID iD should be displayed alongside any publicly available information about them.

Workflow 2: Collecting iDs retrospectively

If your system already contains information about members and/or service activities, or if it does not have a registration component, then you can instead email your researchers a unique link, which directs them to ORCID to authenticate their iD, and grant your organization permission to update their record. The individual is then redirected to a specially created web page you provide.  Your system stores the link between the ORCID iD and email address/user account and uses the permissions you have been granted to update the appropriate section of the individual’’s ORCID record, connecting them and their activities with your  organization.  Again, their ORCID iD should be displayed alongside any publicly available information about them.

Periods of service or membership

Affiliation assertions contain start dates and end dates.  The workflows above provide long-term update permissions, which can be used to update the end date when an individual’s period of service finishes.  As well as providing a start date when you first update their record, your system should also use the ORCID API to add an end date to your researchers’ records, to make their full term of service for or membership of your organization clear.



It is critical that you collect ORCID iDs and obtain permission to read and update ORCID records, by first prompting users to sign into ORCID from within your system, and then retrieving their data from the ORCID Registry using the ORCID API. It is also essential to provide information within your system about why you are collecting ORCID iDs and why this is beneficial to your users.

You must provide a hyperlinked ORCID-branded button for collecting authenticated ORCID iDs: This can be at sign-in, within the researcher’s personal profile, or in a customized email to a researcher. Using an ORCID-branded button consistently helps ensure that researchers associate it with being asked to securely provide their iD, which in turn builds trust in ORCID as a reliable identifier.

Technical documentation


You can help your researchers get credit for their invited positions and distinctions by connecting validated information about their affiliation with you to their ORCID records. At the same time, you will be helping to build trust in scholarly communications. By asserting the connection between individuals and your organization -- connections that only your organization can make authoritatively -- you ensure that your organization is appropriately acknowledged when your employees and affiliates make professional contributions. That information can then be shared, with the researcher's permission, with the other systems they interact with, helping to create a trustworthy research information infrastructure.

Adding information to ORCID records involves sending formatted data to the ORCID Registry using the ORCID API, and saving the put code that the ORCID Registry returns for each item. Doing this requires that you have collected both ORCID iDs and update permission as described in Authenticate above.

Technical documentation


Displaying ORCID iDs clearly signals to your users that your system supports ORCID. It requires you to have collected validated ORCID iDs from researchers as described above in Authenticate. To complete the Display process:

Once a researcher has connected their ORCID iD to your system, publicly display their iD on their profile within your system so that they know that they have successfully connected and asserted their iD. Format the iD as a hyperlinked URI and include the green iD icon, per our iD Display Guidelines. Also include the authenticated iD in any metadata sent to third-party services when applicable.