EPO worldwide bibliographic data (DOCDB)

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DOCDB is the EPO's master documentation database with worldwide coverage. It contains bibliographic data, abstracts, citations and the DOCDB simple patent family, but no full text or images.

Download a sample file

DOCDB data is the backbone of many commercial products and services. It includes bibliographic data from over 100 countries worldwide. The data goes back as far as the 1830s for some patent authorities, and is available as backfile and frontfile.

With DOCDB you can:

  • obtain the bibliographic data of patents from around the world, plus abstracts, citations and the simple DOCDB patent family
  • download bi-weekly frontfiles and an annual backfile
  • receive data in XML WIPO ST 36 format
  • build your own searchable database
Getting started
  1. Check the sample data and information on the main features of bulk data sets.
  2. Order the product from csc@epo.org.
  3. You will receive your user name and password for the download area by e-mail.
  4. Process the backfile first.
  5. Download and process regular weekly exchange files (usually Tuesday and Thursday).
Coverage See weekly updated statistics
Format XML ST36
Volume Frontfile: approx. 1 GB (zipped)
Backfile: approx. 110 GB (zipped)
Delivery Current data (frontfile) is available as a weekly download.
Backfile data is available for download once a year.
Price Please visit our shop for prices.

The EPO's bulk data sets are also referred to as "raw data products" or "EPO databases". 

The terms and conditions for licensing of EPO databases apply.

Further information

DOCDB user documentation

The documentation provides the technical specifications (according to WIPO and ISO standards) for the XML exchange format in the (bibliographic) master database DOCDB. It also provides a technical description of the DOCDB data.

Other useful resources

Useful tables and statistics

Currently used DTD/Schema

Coverage of the EPO's bibliographic data (DOCDB) on a world map

DOCDB User Documentation v.

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To choose the best-suited data set or web service for your needs, email patentdata@epo.org and request an online consultation via Microsoft Teams, Zoom or Skype.