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Global Data Dictionary

What is Global Data Dictionary

The GS1 Global Data Dictionary (GDD) is a repository of the data elements defined across all GS1 Standards.

What is the scope of the Global Data Dictionary?

GS1 Business Message Standards (BMS) and their components with definitions for GDSN 2.8, eCom 3.0 and 3.1TSD 1.0 and EPCIS 1.0.1. Higher versions will be added upon ratification.

  • Business Messages
  • Business Information Entities - message components and relationship between them
  • Business Data Types
  • ode Lists used in Business Messages
  • Business Validation Rules
  • Context values

GDD contains also the GS1 Glossary of Terms applicable to all GS1 standards.

Structure of GDD content

The Business Messages are composed of Business Information Entities that comprise classes of information and their attributes. The attributes, in turn, have data types that may contain code lists. In release 2.8, the code lists are applied directly to the attributes.

The structure and allowed content of Business Message are published as XML schemas that are used to validate the actual messages exchanged between business partners. There are some additional rules, however, that need to be applied to BIEs to ensure their use consistent with the business requirements. Due to syntax limitations, these rules are not included in the XML schemas and they have to be accessed via GDD. These rules apply to the specific business context, so they can be searched by the context value sets.


All the message components have their definitions, relationship to other components and multiplicity - the specified number of times they can appear in the given location of the message. All this information is also published in the GDD. 

The specification of GS1 Business Messages and XML schemas defining their structure can be freely downloaded from GS1 website.