There are four types of resources you should be sure to look for when completing interdisciplinary research: (1) academic articles; (2) eBooks; (3) data and statistics; and (4) news.
The best way to find research articles is by keyword searching on some of the large databases you gain access to through UNC libraries. The best way to access these databases is through the A-Z Databases webpage. If you are looking for subject-specific databases, you can check out the E-Research by Discipline page.
Generally, we recommend the following databases: (1) Articles ; (2) ProQuest Central; (3) Academic Search Premier; (4) JSTOR; and (5) SSRN (which also contains drafts of upcoming articles). All these databases will have a huge variety of articles for you to search through.
Be sure to run your searches through multiple databases and adjust your keyword searches as you sift through your results for more efficient research.
Academic articles are an essential part of interdisciplinary research, but don’t forget about books in print and digital formats.
You can search for eBooks in the UNC catalog just like print materials. However, there are four eBook specific databases that you can search if a book isn’t appearing in the catalog: (1) SpringerLink; (2) EbscoHost; (3) Oxford Academic (formally Oxford Scholarship Online); and (4) ProQuest eBook Central.
Data and Statistics
If you are looking for some statistical support from your paper, a great place to start is the Law Library’s research guide: Online Statistical Information for the UNC Law Community. You can also check out Davis Library’s Numerical Data research guide. Both guides will help you narrow down relevant resources.
Next, don’t forget to utilize federal, state, and local government websites. They will often compile data on specific programs or topics that can be helpful for researchers.
One effective way to search government sites is using the Google search operator “site:” to restrict your google search to one website. For example, the search “site: nyt.com UNC” would restrict the search for the term “UNC” to only the New York Times website.
This is helpful if the website doesn’t have a good way of searching on the site itself.
Looking at news articles can be helpful for finding a topic, making sure your research is up-to-date, and for finding a good hook for your paper.
For legal news, don’t forget to subscribe to alerts from Law360 and Bloomberg News to get relevant pieces sent to your inbox every day. Check out our Current Awareness post for more details.
Members of the UNC law community can access the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and Financial Times. Instructions for signing-up are available on MyCarolinaLaw.
Finally, if you are looking for local news, check out America’s News. This helpful database allows you to search a wide variety of local newspapers, and allows you to restrict your search geographically.
With all these resources at your fingertips, completing your interdisciplinary research should be much easier! And don’t forget to reach out the reference desk with any questions.