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Research Guides

Political Science

Get started with key print and online resources in political science.

Why use government information?

Government documents and publications provide information on a wealth of social, economic and political issues, in both contemporary and historical contexts.

Robarts Library houses government documents on the 4th and 5th floors.  These publications are arranged according to CODOC, a call system developed specially for government documents.

Canadian government resources

Canadian Government Information: Research Guide 

  • Contains information about the government publications collections at the University of Toronto Libraries, and includes links to public policy resources, statistics, government finance, provincial resources, and more
  • Complied by Sam-chin Li, Government Information Librarian 

Canadian Government Documents: Google custom search 

  • Via Carleton University
  • Google custom search tends to pull more accurate results than the federal government's own search engine
  • Searches across federal, provincial and municipal sites; results can be broken down by level of government

Government of Canada (primary site)

  • Excellent starting point for current Government of Canada research
  • Includes links to government departments and agencies, programs and services, and provincial sites

Government of Canada Web Archive 

  • Library and Archives of Canada harvests the Federal Government of Canada websites on a semi-annual basis since December 2005
  • Access is provided through searching by keyword, by department name, and by URL 
  • Also possible to search by specific format type, e.g. .pdf
  • Useful for tracking disappearing documents, earlier versions of websites, etc.

Canadian Research Index (CRI), 1982+

  • Indexes depository publications of research value by Canadian federal, provincial and territorial governments (excluding Nunavut)
  • Also indexes non-depository policy, social, economic, and political reports issued by hundreds of Canadian government agencies and departments; Statistics Canada monographs and serials; and scientific and technical reports issued by research institutes and government labs
  • Excellent resource for Canadian political science research
  • Note that the CRI is useful as a starting point, or when library or web searches produce disappointing results
    • However, users must manually search the library catalogue/web to locate titles found in the CRI
    • If you can't find a title, try using the Mircolog number (e.g., 99-1234) in the Microlog (CRI) fiche set; these are held in the Government Publications Collection, 5th floor, Robarts

Federal Science Library 

  • Searchable portal to the print collections and repositories of seven federal science-based departments and agencies.
  • Some departmental publications, reports, data sets and other content are freely available for anyone to access or download. 

United States and other countries

Foreign Government Information: Research Guide

  • A guide to major print and electronic foreign government information. 
  • Compiled by Sam-chin Li, Government Information Librarian. 

Catalog of United States Government Publications (GPO), 1976+ 

  • Indexes web and print U.S. federal documents
  • Print documents are available in microcard/fiche in the Government Publications Collection, 5th floor, Robarts Library; to access please see staff at the Reference desk, 4th floor, Robarts, for assistance
  • The Congressional Record, Bound Edition is available online (1961 - 2006)

Digital National Security Archive 

  • Contains significant primary documents central to U.S. foreign and military policy since 1945 
  • Core collections focus on a single topic, e.g.:
    • Afghanistan: The Making of U.S. Policy, 1973-1990
    • China and the United States: From Hostility to Engagement, 1960-1998
    • Iraqgate: Saddam Hussein, U.S. Policy and the Prelude to the Persian Gulf War, 1980-1994
    • Presidential Directives on National Security from Harry Truman to George W. Bush (Part II)
    • Terrorism and US Policy 1968-2002
    • U.S. Military Uses of Space, 1945-1991.

House of Commons Parliamentary Papers (British) 

  • Current material includes bills, committee reports, etc.


  • An archive for government data resources. 
  • Accepts deposits of public data resources from the community and recommendations of public data resources that ICPSR itself might add to DataLumos.

Municipal by-law portals

Research Guide: Global Information Resources, University of Michigan

  • Compiled at the University of Michigan Documents Center

Official Gazettes and Civil Society Documentation

  • A collection of official gazettes and other key historical government documentation from countries where the integrity of the public record is known to be at risk


UN & Intergovernmental organizations (IGOs): Research Guide 

  • A guide to major print and electronic IGO information.
  • Prepared by Sherry Smugler, Nich Worby and Sam-chin Li, University of Toronto Libraries.

Official Document System of the United Nations (ODS)

  • Provides full-text access to most UN parliamentary documents from 1993 onwards

OECD iLibrary

  • Organisation for Economic and Cooperative Development's (OECD) online library of statistical databases, books and periodicals; contains all publications and data sets released by OECD
  • University of Toronto access only

Europa: The official web site of European Union 

  • Provides links to EU publications, treaties, legislation, statistics, opinion polls, and archives