See the agenda for the upcoming PCC Policy Committee meeting (

On that agenda (Thursday at 4:00) is the report of a task group on coding gender which addresses ISO5218 briefly.  Direct link: field_RecommendationReport.pdf   





John Hostage

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From: Program for Cooperative Cataloging [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Moore, Richard
Sent: Monday, October 31, 2016 08:47
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [PCCLIST] ISO5218 in 375 in LC/NAF




I recall that this has been discussed before, but I don’t recall an outcome.


There are currently 1593 NARs in LC/NAF, in which the 375 subfield contains the $2 source code ISO5218. The $a contains terms such as “male” and “female”.


However, ISO5218 “specifies a uniform representation of human sexes for the interchange of information”, by the means of numerical codes. It is a source of codes for the data elements Not known, Male, Female and Not Applicable (Inconnu, Masculin, Féminin and Sans objet).


RDA says “Select a term from a standard list, if available”. DCM:Z1 says “prefer controlled vocabulary, such as LCSH, recording the source in subfield $2”. ISO5218 is neither a standard list of terms, nor a controlled vocabulary; it’s a source of codes for data interchange.







Richard Moore

Authority Control Team Manager

The British Library


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