JavaScriptSerializer - JSON serialization of enum as string JavaScriptSerializer - JSON serialization of enum as string json json

JavaScriptSerializer - JSON serialization of enum as string

I have found that Json.NET provides the exact functionality I'm looking for with a StringEnumConverter attribute:

using Newtonsoft.Json;using Newtonsoft.Json.Converters;[JsonConverter(typeof(StringEnumConverter))]public Gender Gender { get; set; }

More details at available on StringEnumConverter documentation.

There are other places to configure this converter more globally:

  • enum itself if you want enum always be serialized/deserialized as string:

    [JsonConverter(typeof(StringEnumConverter))]  enum Gender { Male, Female }
  • In case anyone wants to avoid attribute decoration, you can add the converter to your JsonSerializer (suggested by Bjørn Egil):

    serializer.Converters.Add(new Newtonsoft.Json.Converters.StringEnumConverter()); 

    and it will work for every enum it sees during that serialization (suggested by Travis).

  • or JsonConverter (suggested by banana):

    JsonConvert.SerializeObject(MyObject,     new Newtonsoft.Json.Converters.StringEnumConverter());

Additionally you can control casing and whether numbers are still accepted by using StringEnumConverter(NamingStrategy, Boolean) constructor.

No there is no special attribute you can use. JavaScriptSerializer serializes enums to their numeric values and not their string representation. You would need to use custom serialization to serialize the enum as its name instead of numeric value.

If you can use JSON.Net instead of JavaScriptSerializer than see answer on this question provided by OmerBakhari: covers this use case (via the attribute [JsonConverter(typeof(StringEnumConverter))]) and many others not handled by the built in .net serializers. Here is a link comparing features and functionalities of the serializers.

Add the below to your global.asax for JSON serialization of c# enum as string

  HttpConfiguration config = GlobalConfiguration.Configuration;            config.Formatters.JsonFormatter.SerializerSettings.Formatting =                Newtonsoft.Json.Formatting.Indented;            config.Formatters.JsonFormatter.SerializerSettings.Converters.Add                (new Newtonsoft.Json.Converters.StringEnumConverter());