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Public-images-osm logo.svg ref:ISTAT
Osm element key.svg
Provides the code assigned by ISTAT to that administrative division Edit
Group: Annotation
Used on these elements
should not be used on nodesshould not be used on waysshould not be used on areasmay be used on relations
Status: unspecified

Use ref:ISTAT=code to provide a reference to the ISTAT code for that administrative division.

ISTAT (istituto nazionale di statistica) is the Italian National Institute for Statistics. It assigns a short numeric code to every administrative division in Italy, that is to comuni (municipalities), province (provinces) and regioni (regions). Each of these divisions is represented in the database as a relation, following the Relation:boundary scheme. The code for the division is tagged on that relation using ref:ISTAT=code.

The ISTAT code is a unique reference: each division has a different code. The codes have the following schema:

  • Regioni have a 2-digit code, from 01 to 20 (loosely assigned following the north-south direction);
  • Province have a 3-digit code, from 001 to 110;
  • Comuni have a 6-digit code: the first 3 digits are the code of the provincia they belong to, the others are just an identifier inside that provincia.


All Italian administrative divisions are present in the database and all of them are appropriately tagged using this tag (as of 2012-06-01).

We now have to maintain these tags and update them when ISTAT changes the codes (that happens usually when comuni are split/joined or when a comune changes provincia).

We expect many changes in the regione Sardegna in January 2013 due to the repeal of 4 province (see next section for further detail).


The only ISTAT code that can't be found in the database is the one for the provincia of Aosta, since the provincia of Aosta "doesn't exist" (it isn't an administrative division). This is because it would be the only provincia inside the regione Valle d'Aosta (which is very small) so all its duties are assigned to the regione, making the provincia unnecessary. Yet, it does have a ISTAT code, so we could say that it's a "statistical" division. We need a way to put this on the map (maybe with a boundary=statistical?).

The same fate may happen to the four province of the regione Sardegna that are scheduled for repeal on January 2013 after a referendum held in May 2012.


The ISTAT codes of all administrative division can be found in the Italian Wikipedia pages of the divisions or on the ISTAT website.