UN document numbers

On the zotero-legal list, we’re looking at UN materials. These have a
distinctive citation style that includes the “UN document number” and,
for unofficial publications of UN bodies, a “UN sales number”. A user
(brazuca) gives the following example of a cite to a UN sales document
in his journal’s house style (Bluebook poses similar issues):

ECLAC (Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean)
(2002), Foreign investment in latin america and the caribbean, 2001
(LC/G.2178-P/I), Santiago, ECLAC, October. United Nations Publication,
sales N°: E.02.II.G.47.

He comments: “My main problem is the kludge solution for adding the
sales number and the document signature. Note how different the style
is on a non-UN document”:

IMF (International Monetary Fund) (2009), Regional economic outlook :
asia and pacific. world economic and financial surveys, Washington,
DC, May.

“The document might have a call-number, but we don’t want it in this
case since its not a UN document. For this reason, we use the test.”

There are two problems: (1) the need for two identifiers for UN sales
documents; and (2) the need to discriminate between documents that
have a "visible document number " that should be printed in the
citation (UN and WTO materials both require this) and those that have
an “invisible document number” that should be recorded in the database
item, but is not used in citations. We’d like to come up with a
uniform solution to keep the records consistent among users, and we
certainly don’t want to be relying on the “note” field.

My first attempt at threading the needle on this with minimal
extensions to CSL is like so:

(a) use “archive_location” for UN and WTO document numbers and for
"invisible" document numbers both;
(b) add a separate variable in CSL for UN sales numbers, similar to
DOI and ISBN.

To control the appearance of citations, we could do the following
(omitting details of how the CSL markup would work – can provide that
if it’s needed for clarity):

© leave the “archive” variable blank for items that have "invisible"
document numbers;
(d) set “un” or “wto” in the “archive” variable for UN and WTO documents;
(e) provide a test in CSL for a locale term in a particular variable,
as ;
(f) add the terms “archive-wto” and “archive-un”.and "UN sales number"
to locales.

This would provide a rational appearance to the UI for data entry, and
give enough information to compose correct citations for EU, UN and
WTO materials. It also avoids proliferating item types, which I
reckon is a good thing. If there is a better solution, I’ll be happy
to go another route instead, but at least this is a first cut at
sorting out this class of material.

Thoughts?

Frank

I’m kind of exhausted, and so may miss some nuance, but …

I don’t follow all this (“invisible” numbers?), so moving on to the
specifics I do seem to understand …

My first attempt at threading the needle on this with minimal
extensions to CSL is like so:

(a) use “archive_location” for UN and WTO document numbers and for
"invisible" document numbers both;

That doesn’t make much sense to me. We have “number” for document
numbers, and that seems more appropriate in this case?

(b) add a separate variable in CSL for UN sales numbers, similar to
DOI and ISBN.

It would be nice to find a more generic term for this.

To control the appearance of citations, we could do the following
(omitting details of how the CSL markup would work – can provide that
if it’s needed for clarity):

© leave the “archive” variable blank for items that have "invisible"
document numbers;
(d) set “un” or “wto” in the “archive” variable for UN and WTO documents;
(e) provide a test in CSL for a locale term in a particular variable,
as ;
(f) add the terms “archive-wto” and “archive-un”.and "UN sales number"
to locales.

Yeah, here’s where I’m lost. I don’t really understand all of the
example references, and how they relate to data variables/fields.

Bruce