DUNS Number

What is a DUNS number?

DUNS stands for "data universal numbering system." DUNS numbers are issued by Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) and consist of nine digits.

Why does my institution have to provide it?

The federal government has adopted the use of DUNS numbers to keep track of how federal grant money is dispersed. To learn more about the policy, you can read the Federal Registrar notice external link (PDF).

How do I find out my institution's DUNS number?

You should ask your institution's grant administrator or chief financial officer to provide your institution's DUNS number. Research universities and most colleges, independent libraries, and large organizations already have DUNS numbers.

In the event that your authorizing official does not have your institution’s DUNS number on file, or is uncertain as to your institution’s DUNS number registration status, the authorizing official may call the Dun & Bradstreet help line for federal grant applicants: 1-866-705-5711. If your institution already has a DUNS number, it will be provided over the phone to your authoring official. Please note that Dun & Bradstreet will only provide the DUNS number to an authorizing official over the phone.

What happens if my institution does not have a DUNS number?

The chief financial officer or authorizing official of your institution will need to register for a DUNS number. There are two ways to do this.

  1. Call the Dun & Bradstreet help line for federal grant applicants: 1-866-705-5711. The process will take about ten minutes and your institution will receive a DUNS number within a few business days. When you call, tell them that you are applying to a federal grant program and need to register for a DUNS number. You will be asked to provide the following information:
    • name of institution
    • address
    • telephone number
    • name of the head of the institution (CEO, president, director, etc.)
    • type of institution (university, college, library, museum, historical society, etc.)
    • total number of employees (full- and part-time)
  2. Register through Dun & Bradstreet's Web site at external link . Please note that registration via the Web site may take as long as 30 business days to complete.

Is there a fee for registering for a DUNS number?

No. D&B will not charge you a fee. You are also not obligated to purchase any of their products.