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The present review compares and contrasts the diagnostic entities and taxonomy of substance use and addictive disorders in the beta draft of the Eleventh Revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD 11), which was released in November 2016, and the Fifth Edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), which was published in mid-2013. Recently published papers relevant to these two classification systems are examined. New initiatives in diagnosis and assessment including the addictions neuroclinical assessment are noted.The draft ICD 11 retains substance dependence as the ‘master diagnosis’ in contrast to the broader and heterogeneous concept of substance use disorder in DSM-5 and there is empirical support for the coherence of substance dependence for alcohol, cannabis, and prescribed opioids. Both systems now include gambling disorder in the addictive disorders section, with it being transferred from the impulse control disorders section. The new diagnosis of Internet gaming disorder is included in DSM-5 as a condition for further study, and gaming disorder is grouped with the substance and gambling disorders in the draft ICD 11. Initiatives from the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) are highlighting the importance of capturing the neurobiological phases of the addictive cycle in clinical diagnosis and assessment.Although most of the changes in the draft ICD 11 and DSM-5 are incremental, the contrast between DSM-5 substance use disorder and substance dependence in the draft ICD 11, and the inclusion of gambling disorder and gaming disorder will generate much discussion and research.