International copyright laws apply to United Nations Publications.
UN documents fall under the category of proprietary intellectual property in the sense that the UN emblem or the corporate name appearing on their mastheads designate their origin in terms of recent authorship. The fact that some publications and most documents are available at no charge does not mean that they are in the public domain.
By way of consequence, the use of texts and images retrieved from UN documents should at all times be the object of careful treatment. The source should be quoted in full. Users should ascertain that they are not using old, superseded data. When in doubt, a request should be placed. Permission to use should be requested under all circumstances when the material is reproduced with a commercial aim. It is not required in cases of ‘fair-use’ environments, like class-room situations, academic research, private use, and generally for copies created within administrations, educational institutions and governmental offices for convenience or personal reference and study.
Permissions and translations
The United Nations welcomes requests for permissions to excerpt, photocopy, and reprint as well as proposals for translations of its publications in foreign languages. As the United Nations publishes several series and/or titles in other languages, we encourage you to check the online issue of the Publications catalogue prior to submitting your request.
Please send queries and requests to:
UN Sales & Marketing Section
The reprint of books in extenso relate to licensing contracts. To view a model contract, please view our website entry under Licensing.
To reprint excerpts from publications, documents, papers as well as material posted on the United Nations website a permission will apply. (To reproduce a photo, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org)
The United Nations policy is consistent with the institution's aim of wide dissemination of information. We welcome permissions requests. In all cases we request that a standard credit line be included: from (full title of the publication you are using ), by (author(s)/editor(s)/department name ), © (copyright year) United Nations. Reprinted with the permission of the publisher.
Requests should be detailed and include the information below to expedite our reply.
As an option, you may download our online permission request form. Please fax, email, or mail to us the completed form and copies of the excerpts that you wish to reproduce. If you are requesting permissions from multiple titles, please download, complete and submit one form for each title:
Information about the United Nations work you wish to reproduce
300 E 42nd Street, 9th Floor, IN-919J
USA - New York, New York 10017
If your request concerns web posted material, please refer to this copyright notice.
Details about yourself and your organization
- Print publication or Web material (specify)
- Full title
- Author(s) /Department
- Year of publication
- Material requested: include photocopy of text, graphs, tables, illustrations. with page numbers
- Total number of pages (1 page = 250 words)
title, author, publisher, language, publication date, print run (hardcover and paperback), sale price (hardcover and paperback), total number of pages, territory (world, a specific country), audience
Textbook (as above)
Journal, bulletin, magazine ( as above + table of contents)
- Individual (specify)
- Commercial company (specify)
- Non profit organization (specify)
- Intended use and purpose
CD-ROM ( as above
+ table of contents)
details on the site hosting the material, duration of posting, audience, type of access: free, paying, secure (specify)
NB: To reproduce material posted on the United Nations website on your website, please create a link to the item on the United Nations website rather than downloading from our site.
Commercial use of the material (specify)
Non commercial use of the material (specify)
Guidelines for photocopies and coursepacks
Requests should include:
- Professor/instructor name
- Course name and number
- Expected enrollment
author, full title, page numbers, ISBN
journal, volume number, issue number, year, author, article full title, page numbers
Guidelines for translations