“… information produced on all levels of government, academia, business and industry in electronic and print formats not controlled by commercial publishing i.e. where publishing is not the primary activity of the producing body” -- ICGL Luxembourg definition, 1997; Expanded in New York, 2004
Grey literature is created by researchers and practitioners in various fields. The groups and institutions that create grey literature may be government (including state and local), industry, NGOs, think tanks and research groups that disseminate information in the form of reports or papers rather than by publishing scholarly articles in journals.
Grey literature may be a valuable addition to your research by providing a fuller picture of your research topic. Grey literature may also be more current than other published material because it can be produced and shared quickly on the web rather than going through a peer-review process.
Grey literature can be difficult to find since it’s not typically indexed in commercial databases such as those you’ll find at the library. It’s also not systematically distributed, collected, archived or preserved. However, here are some tips to get you started:
Here are some tools that may be useful to your search:
|Operator||What it does||Example|
|"quotes around a phrase"||Searches on a string of words rather than each word individually||"search on this phrase"
"to be or not to be"
|"word"||Searches on the exact spelling of the word within the quotes||"Thomson"
|site:||Searches within a specific domain (such as .gov) or website (such as ohp.parks.ca.gov)||site:.gov
|filetype:||Searches for a specific filetype|| filetype:pdf
|link:||Searches for pages that link to a specified page.||link:youtube.com|