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Sheila Elz

Master Data Manager

Bayer AG Pharmaceuticals

Semantic interoperability throughout the entire medicinal product lifecycle with IDMP Ontology

The IDMP Ontology is a cross-industry collaborative implementation of a globally standardized product data model for pharma. The core conceptual data model is published by the International Standards Organization (ISO) for the Identification of Medicinal Products (IDMP). The main goal of the ISO IDMP standards is patient safety, and adherence to IDMP brings with it benefits that go beyond compliance with regulatory requirements, especially when FAIRified in the ontological format. Diverse, non-standard IDMP implementations are thus remedied by self-describing data to realize the full potential of IDMP.


The IDMP Ontology collaboration has grown from the original four to 11 pharma companies, and includes service partners for project management, ontology development, and a collaborative ontology development environment, under the umbrella of the Pistoia Alliance.

The collaboration doesn’t stop there – ISO standards authors and colleagues from regulatory agencies and pharma companies contribute as subject matter experts in meetings with ontology developers. Agile implementation and a sound governance structure are ensured.

The IDMP Ontology provides a universal product data model as backbone for the pharmaceutical industry. It harmonizes diverse perspectives on medicinal products in an innovative, ontological approach. In this way, it effectively bridges the gap between people, processes, and systems.

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