Information and services for users

Istat Library

The Istat library is open to the public and permits access to national and international statistical information. It contains 600,000 volumes and 2,700 current periodicals, as well as a historical fund consisting of 1,500 volumes published prior to 1900.

Since 1996 the Library has joined the National Library Service, the Italian library network promoted by the Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities.

Since 2000 it has had an online public access catalog (OPAC), a user-friendly method to access and search the bibliographic catalogue.

Since 2011, the online catalogue has been enriched with the Digital Library section where several official statistics documents are available.

In addition to the Institute’s own publications, the paper- and computer-based collections include works on statistical and socio-economic subjects by Italian and foreign authors, periodical and special publications by national institutes of statistics around the world and by international bodies (BIT, FAO, FMI, OCDE, ONU ecc.) and the main Italian and overseas organisations and institutes. Collections of laws and other documents of a legal nature are also available.

A room is available on the second floor of Istat’s head offices for users to consult the volumes. Access is allowed for visitors aged 18 or over. Visitors must obtain a pass, which is issued at I reception, after leaving a current identity document.



The Istat library was formally established in 1926 as part of the constitution of the Central Institute of Statistics.

Its initial core consisted of volumes from the library of the Ministry of Agriculture, which derived from the publishing activities of the Department of Statistics of the Kingdom of Italy, from donations by private benefactors and Italian and overseas public institutions.

At the end of 1929 the volumes were transferred to the Institute’s small temporary premises in Via di Santa Susanna. Only in January 1932 was the library permanently moved to its new premises in Via Balbo, where its rational organisation began.

Over time the library’s importance within the Institute has grown. Its history faithfully mirrors the changes that have occurred in the panorama of Italian statistics. In addition to the works published by the Institute, the documentation available to users includes works on statistical and socio-economic subjects, by Italian and foreign authors, by national institutes of statistics around the world and international organisations.

Since 1996 the library has been one of the hubs of the National Library System (SBN), thus offering users the opportunity to carry out library searches in the Index, a database containing over 2,000,000 items comprised by the catalogues of the major Italian libraries. For publications acquired by the library between 1926 and 1979 only a printed catalogue exists, while publications acquired since 1980 have been recorded electronically.



Assistance for consultation
Indications for research projects and which catalogues to consult; information on Library funding and organization; guided consultation service for digital catalogues (publications starting from 1980 onwards, ISTAT works from 1926 and index of statistics Annals from 1871), disks and CD-ROMs.

Electronic products, online and internet searches
Internal staff may freely consult CD-ROMs, floppy disks and databases during Library opening hours. For further information, please call +39 06 4673.2380.

Searches on demand
Bibliographic or factual searches may be requested by writing via fax or email. A charge could be applied for this service. Please indicate your telephone number and/or address on the request.

  • Delivery by post, €0.60 per page
  • Fax to Italy, €1 per page
  • Fax abroad, €2 per page
  • File to Italy or abroad: €25 per hour

Readers can photocopy books in the library in accordance with copyright law.

Internal loans
Internal loan is strictly personal and exclusively available to the Institute’s community. Loans are allowed for maximum of two works that may be taken out for a period of one month, renewable. Reference works, periodicals and censuses are not available on loan.

Interlibrary loans
The Library is available for national and international interlibrary loans. Requests may be presented to the ISTAT Library via post, fax or email. Interlibrary loans are usually free of charge, with the exception of delivery charges. Expenses for transport by courier and any other loan costs will be charged to the person requesting the loan.
The library’s collection is available for other libraries with the exclusion of periodicals, censuses and reference material, which may be provided at a charge in photocopies.


via Cesare Balbo, 16 – 00184 Roma
ph. +39 06 4673.2380
fax +39 06 4673.2617
Opening hours:
Monday to Wednesday 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
Thursday to Friday 9:00 am – 1:30 pm

For information and historical searches: Contact Centre