Digital Library of the Commons
The Comprehensive Bibliography of the Commons
How to Search the Comprehensive Bibliography on the Commons



To search the bibliography, enter your search terms in the box and hit the enter key (or click on the "Search" button).

The default search is for all terms in any order. You do not need to enter "and" between the search terms.


Common terms such as and, an, the are "stopwords" and will be ignored by the search engine to avoid results with too many records. Here is a list of stopwords.

Searching for a Phrase

To search for a phrase use double quotation marks around the phrase. For example, "common pool resources" will find only those records where the phrase "common pool resources" appears in the record.


By placing a "*" symbol at the end of a word, you can retrieve variant endings of that word. For example, a search on "forest*" will retrieve forest, forests, forestry, etc.


The advanced search gives you the option of combining multiple search terms and filtering your results by year, region, sector, or country. In addition, you can limit your search to find only records that are available online.

To perform an advanced search, enter your search terms in the search box at the top of the Advanced Search page.

Filter By

If you would like to restrict your results to a particular region, sector, country, or date, select the appropriate fields in the "Filter By" section of the search page.

To limit results to only articles available online, click on the box next to "restrict search to articles available online."

Display Results

To change the number of records that are displayed on a page, select the number in the "Display Results" section of the search page.

Records will be sorted according to the year, with most recent records appearing first. If you would prefer to have records sorted alphabetically according to the authors' family names, you can change this setting in the "Display Results" section of the search page by changing "Sort by year" to "Sort by author."