BASIC SEARCH INSTRUCTIONS
Specifying Documents v. Web Resources
Searching by Region/Country
Searching by Topic/Subject
Searching by Date
Keyword Searching

ADVANCED SEARCH INSTRUCTIONS
Searching by Document Type
Searching by Language
Searching by Author
Searching by Publisher

SORTING SEARCH RESULTS
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What's in the collection?
How do I search for something by title?
Why do some documents show up more than once in the results list?
Why can't I find something I know is in the collection?
What countries are in what region?
How are the topics/subjects organized into categories?

BASIC SEARCH
The Basic Search allows you to search for documents, web resources, or both. You can search by Region/Country, Topic/Subject, Date, or Keywords, as well as any combination of the above.

Specifying Documents v. Web Resources
Searching by Region/Country
Searching by Topic/Subject
Searching by Date
Keyword Searching

Specifying Documents v. Web Resources
Access Democracy contains both text documents and web resources.
  • The system will default to searching both documents and web resources together, unless you specify otherwise.
  • To limit your search to documents only, select [click in the small circle to the left of the word] "Documents" at the top of the search screen.
  • To limit your search to web resources only, select "Web Resources" at the top of the search screen. 
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    Searching by Region/Country
    Access Democracy contains materials on all countries and regions where NDI has conducted programs, regardless of whether it is currently active there. Unless you specify otherwise, the system will search on all countries and regions. Countries are grouped into geographic regions (e.g. "Central and Eastern Europe", "Eurasia", "Asia", etc.), and then listed alphabetically.
  • To search by a specific country, scroll through the list labeled "Region/Country" by clicking on the arrow to the right of the field, then clicking on the vertical scrollbar that appears. Select the country you want, and then click "Search!"
  • To search for a particular region (e.g. "Asia" or "Southern Africa") select the region from the Region/Country list and click "Search!" 

    Note: Searching by region will retrieve all the documents relevant to the region as a whole, as well as documents that are relevant to any of the countries within that region. For example, searching on "Asia" will retrieve documents on the Asia region, as well as Australia, Burma, China, Indonesia, etc. 

    Selecting "all" regions/countries will retrieve every document in the database. This will take quite a while to process.
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    Searching by Topic/Subject
    Materials in Access Democracy are categorized according to topic or subject. Major topics may consist of one or more subtopics.
  • To search by a specific topic or subject, select the category (major or minor) you want from the field labeled "Topic/Subject" and click "Search!"

    Note: Searching on "major" categories (e.g. Elections, Governance, Women's Participation) will retrieve items relevant to the major category as well as the minor categories that appear indented below them. For example, searching on "Elections" will retrieve documents on elections generally, as well as electoral systems & law, human rights, international election monitoring, nonpartisan domestic elections, etc. Searching on a "Minor" category (e.g. "Intergovernmental Relations") will only retrieve documents relevant to the minor category.
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    Searching by Date
    The date field refers either to the year in which the item was published, or the year in which an event (such as an election or coup) took place.
  • To search by date, select a year from the "Date" list and click "Search!"
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    Keyword Searching
    Keyword searching can be used to look for words that appear anywhere in the document, including the title. For web resources, using keywords also searches the abstract/description field.
  • To perform a keyword search, enter one or more words in the keyword field and click "Search!"

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    ADVANCED SEARCH
    The advanced search option allows searching by the above criteria plus language, document type, author, and publisher.

    Searching by Document Type
    Searching by Language
    Searching by Author
    Searching by Publisher

    Searching by Document Type
    Access Democracy allows you to search for a specific type of document such as a handbook, manual, press release, statement, etc. Unless otherwise specified, the system will search for all types of documents.
  • To search by document type, select the type of document from the drop down list.
  • Once you have specified all of your search criteria, click "Search!"

    Note: Selecting a document type will search for documents of that type only. You cannot search for more than one document type at a time, unless you select "All" documents from the list.
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    Searching by Language
    The collection includes documents in a number of different languages, some in multiple languages. If no language is selected, the search will default to all languages.
  • To search by language, click the check box next to the language you want to search by, and click "Search!"

    Note: Multiple languages can be selected for each search. To select more than one language, check the box next each language that you wish to search for.
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    Searching by Author
    Both individuals and organizations are listed. Individuals are listed alphabetically by first name. Organizations are listed alphabetically by the first word (not including "The", "An", etc.) in the name of the organization.
  • To search by author, select an author from the drop down list, and click "Search!"
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    Searching by Publisher
    Publishers are listed alphabetically by the first word in the publisher's name.
  • To search by publisher, select a publisher from the drop down list, and click "Search!"
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    SORTING SEARCH RESULTS
    Search results will appear in topic/subject order. Access Democracy allows you to resort the results in the following ways: topic/subject then region/country; region/country; date; and alphabetically. Documents always appear first on the list, followed by Web resources.
  • To sort your search results, go to the top of the results page, select from the list labeled "Sort Order" and click "Resort".

    When sorted by topic/subject, documents that cover multiple topics will appear first labeled "Cross Topic".