The BIC Library Metadata Group (formerly the Bibliographic Standards Group) reviews and promotes bibliographic and related standards, with particular reference to libraries. It is the UK advisory committee to the British Library for the revision of the MARC 21 (Machine-Readable Cataloguing) formats.

Process for MARC 21 Revision

The MARC 21 formats for bibliographic, authority, holdings, classification, and community information are maintained by the Library of Congress, Library and Archives Canada and the British Library. 

A proposal or discussion paper for changing the formats can be produced by any MARC 21 user. UK users can submit papers to the Library Metadata Group for review. They are then edited by the Library of Congress and distributed electronically via the MARC Forum email discussion list and the MARC development website. To submit a paper for review, please email it to 

The Library Metadata Group reviews all discussion papers and proposals when they are distributed twice a year, and comments are submitted to the American Library Association’s (ALA) MARC Advisory Committee (MAC) in January and June. MAC formally votes on proposals, although final authority rests with the Library of Congress, Library and Archives Canada and the British Library. The British Library represents the Group at the MAC meetings.

Lis-ukbibs is an email discussion list for bibliographic standards in the UK. Follow the link for joining instructions and the archive.


View the minutes of the Library Metadata Group


Members of the Library Metadata Group are appointed by BIC, aiming for representation across the range of libraries and related organisations with an interest in bibliographic standards. Chiefly this includes the British Library, academic libraries, public libraries, special libraries, bibliographic agencies, library systems suppliers, library materials suppliers and the Metadata & Discovery Group (MDG) of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP). 

The Library Metadata Group also endeavours to consult more widely on issues of sectoral or special interest, chiefly through email discussion lists. If you would like to ensure that your sector or special interest area is consulted on relevant MAC proposals or any other metadata developments being considered by the Group, please contact the Chair of the Group, Thurstan Young.

If you work for a BIC member organisation and would like to apply to sit on, and actively contribute towards the work of the BIC Library Metadata Group, please complete this application form and email it to

Current members:

Natasha Aburrow-Jones
Advocates Library, Faculty of Advocates

Niamh Doran

Gwyneth Morgan
Nielsen BookData

Will Peaden
Coventry University

Concetta La Spada
Cambridge University Press

Anne Welsh
Beginning Cataloguing

Jenny Wright
Bibliographic Data Services

Thurstan Young  (Chair of the Group)
The British Library

Terms of Reference

View the Library Metadata Group’s terms of reference.