DS Metadata > Classifications DE

A wide range of statistical classifications is used at European level. It depends on the statistical domain or data collection which classifications are used. 


A statistical classification is 

  • an exhaustive and structured set of mutually exclusive and well-described categories
  • often presented in a hierarchical format reflecting the numerical or alphabetical codes assigned to them
  • used to standardise concepts and compile statistical data.


Some classifications are used in a multidisciplinary manner, meaning in different statistical domains, such as the statistical classification of economic activities (NACE). Other classifications are specific for their domain, like the European short list for causes of death.

The classifications to be used in a data collection are specified in regulations or gentlemen's agreements. This ensures that the data that is collected is comparable between EU members. For their national purposes, EU members may use a different, nationally adapted version of a classification.

Access to classifications 


Classifications are now available as linked open data (LOD) and have been modelled using the XKOS ontology, the extension of SKOS for modeling statistical classifications.

Eurostat's most widely used statistical classifications as LOD can be accessed by using ShowVoc. This is an online platform which allows users to search and browse Eurostat's classification, providing a rich description, such as self-explanatory texts, supplementary units or classification levels.

To help you using ShowVoc for browsing Eurostat's classification please consult the following guide and videos/recordings on our CROS portal.

Below you can see the full list of statistical classifications and their correspondence tables available in ShowVoc.

Ds Metadata > classifications lists accordion EN

DS Metadata > Classifications > other locations EN

Other locations

Eurostat's statistical classifications are also accessible via the page EU vocabularies in different formats, such as RDF, XML, CSV. EU vocabularies also offers a SPARQL endpoint that allows programmatic access to the classifications.

In addition, Eurostat's statistical classifications can be retrieved from the Euro SDMX registry in SDMX-compliant formats. Additional proprietary formats, older versions of the classifications and further related material may also be available on the Circabc website under Eurostat classifications (RAMON archives).

The Statistics Explained glossary on classifications presents short descriptions of the content of each statistical classification with examples.