Directorate for Science, Technology and Innovation

OECD International Survey of Science


The International Survey of Science (ISSA) collects data and information on key topical issues for the global scientific community. Implemented through an open online survey, it aims to provide a timely picture of the state of science to complement other available statistical evidence and indicators and provide new insights that inform science policy around the world.

ISSA is an initiative of the OECD Committee for Scientific and Technological Policy and its Working Party of National Experts of Science and Technology Indicators (NESTI).


ISSA 2021: Science in society in times of crisis 

The multilingual ISSA 2021 edition launched in April focuses on the work conditions of scientists, their engagement with society and contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals, as well as the impact of the COVID-19 on their work and career prospects.


ISSA 2021 implements a brand new approach for engaging with the global scientific and research community. The OECD, as a new member of the ORCID consortium, is using the ORCID authentication system to enable confidential survey participation. This helps reduce response burden and opens up participation to actors in the science system who are not necessarily registered as corresponding authors of indexed scientific publications. 


This OECD project aims to build a widely accessible evidence infrastructure that helps inform policy and for the benefit of the world’s scientific community. Several experts, countries, scientific research organisations and stakeholders have supported and contributed to this work, including the Colombian Ministry of Science, the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research, Korea Institute of Science and Technology Evaluation and Planning, Japan’s National Institute of Science and Technology Policy, HSE University (Russian Federation), Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology, Spanish National Research Council, Directorate-General for Statistics of Education and Science (Portugal), Vitae (United Kingdom), American Association for the Advancement of Science (United States), National Science Foundation (United States), and Academic of Scientific Research and Technology (Egypt). The survey closed in January 2022 and it gathered responses from over 3000 participants from 81 countries around the world. The analysis of the data is ongoing. Results will be disseminated in the first quarter of 2022.

In collaboration with:

Fostering collaboration between science and business in Spain

ISSA 2021 was pre-launched on a pilot basis in February 2021, in Spanish and English, as part of the evidence-gathering activities for an ongoing OECD study with the European Commission to contribute to the "Roadmap to foster co-operation between universities, research and business in Spain” project.


In collaboration with:

OECD science flash survey 2020

The OECD launched this survey in April 2020 to provide a timely picture – i.e. a pulse measure – of the state of science amidst the COVID-19 crisis and report on society’s perceptions of its role and future outlook. This study, which has so far gathered nearly 3000 responses from around 100 countries, complements the STIP-COVID survey on policy responses to the crisis.

In collaboration with



The OECD carried out a second round (ISSA2) of the International Survey of Scientific Authors in 2018, gathering statistical evidence on the digitalisation of science. The results, released in March 2020 and based on the responses from nearly 12 000 scholars across more than 60 countries, provide key insights into the ways in which digitalisation is changing scientific research, and how policy makers can maximise its benefits while addressing the challenges that arise from it. 


Highlights and key publications


Featured indicators





Data and code openly available for analysis

ISSA is an open resource from researchers, for research, about research.

To request access to the research micro dataset and code enabling the replication of the OECD work and new analysis, please complete the research project proposal application form and send it to [email protected]



The first ISSA pilot (ISSA1) carried out in 2015 was designed to collect evidence to address policy-relevant questions on the subject of open access to publications and research outcomes, and the potential implications of open science. ‌Download the policy paper presenting the main findings.

Additional resources:


OECD publications featuring ISSA results

 COVID-19 crisis

 Research workforce and gender 

Access to research and digitalisation of science

Related OECD projects and activities

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