Modern geoinformatic techniques allow the automated creation of detailed glacier inventory data from glacier outlines and digital terrain models (DTMs). Once glacier entities are defined and an appropriate DTM is available, several methods exist to derive the inventory data (e.g. minimum, maximum and mean elevation; mean slope and aspect) for each glacier from digital intersection of both datasets. Compared to the former manual methods, the new grid-based statistical calculations are very fast and reproducible. The major aim of this contribution is to help in standardizing the related calculations to enhance the integrity of the Global Land Ice Monitoring from Space (GLIMS) database. The recommendations were prepared by a working group and also contribute to the European Space
Agency project GlobGlacier. The document follows the former UNESCO manual for the production of the World Glacier Inventory published in 1970, identifies the potential pitfalls, and describes the differences from the former methods of compilation. The online background material for this paper (see http://www.glims.org) contains example scripts for calculation of each parameter and will be updated when required.