RISM – Répertoire International des Sources Musicales
The International Inventory of Musical Sources - Répertoire International des Sources Musicales (RISM) - is an international, non-profit joint venture which aims for comprehensive documentation of extant musical sources worldwide. These primary sources are manuscripts or printed music, writings on music theory, and libretti. They are housed in libraries, archives, monasteries, schools and private collections.
The organization, founded in Paris in 1952, is the largest and only global operation that documents written musical sources. RISM records what exists and where it can be found. As a result, musical traditions are protected through cataloguing in a comprehensive inventory while also being made available to musicologists and musicians. Such work is thus not an end in itself, but leads directly to practical applications.