Finding sci tech grey literature information

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Information about Finding sci tech grey literature information

Published on February 14, 2014

Author: vonhendy



A guide for finding scientific and technical grey literature. Topics include search engines and tools, repositories and subject specific databases. Emphasis on open access/low cost resources.


The recording of this program will be posted at http://rockymountain.sla .org. More to discuss? Use Twitter hashtag #rmsla

Today’s Presenter Matthew Von Hendy, Green Heron Information Services


WELCOME! Owner—Green Heron Information Services  Professional Librarian—National Academies of Science, EPA, NASA  Birder, cyclist, runner— recent Alaskan adventurer 

VIRTUAL LUNCH GOALS Briefly discuss what defines grey literature, what type of resources are covered/what are not, trends and issues in this area  Cover key search tools for scitech grey literature and touch on strengths/weakness of each  Look at the role of repositories in this area and take a peek at some leading examples  Discuss subject specific databases that contain extensive scitech grey literature  Questions and answers 

A FEW NOTES Scientific and technology grey literature resources will our major topic  We will not be covering health sciences grey literature resources  We will be focused primarily on major/well known resources—there are many more specialized sources  Also, we will concentrate primarily on open access, low cost resources although we will touch on some subscription databases/resources 

WHAT IS GREY LITERATURE?  Pull up a chair and have some coffee/tea…

WHAT IS GREY LITERATURE (CONT.) That which is produced on all levels of government, academics, business and industry in print and electronic formats, but which is not controlled by commercial publishers."PloS description– The Fourth International Conference on Grey Literature 1999  Peer-reviewed journal articles, academic/commercially published books 


MANY FORMATS                 Technical reports Pre-Prints Fact Sheets Standards Patents Working papers Committee reports Business documents Newsletters Government documents Technical documentation Conference proceedings White papers Symposia Bulletins Conference Papers

BENEFITS OF SCITECH GREYLIT Provide high level overviews  Recent bibliographies  Source of cutting edge information– grey literature can frequently appear before conventional academic literature  Source of statistics and datasets 

LIMITATIONS OF SCITECH GREY LIT Reliability of information—is there any peer-review or evidence base  Who is publishing it—have you heard of the organization and/or do they have a particular point of view  Searchability—even if it’s a great or useful piece of work can it be found? 

STATUS OF SCITECH GREYLIT SEARCH  The Mediocre, the Bad and the Ugly (apologies to Clint Eastwood)

SEARCH TOOLS– THE MEDIOCRE DOE Information Systems Science Accelerator- Federated search covering DOE related research, articles and conference proceedings  Science Gov Searches over 50 U.S. Government science-related databases and websites  WorldWideScience.Org - Federated search that covers national and international government science resources 

SEARCH TOOLS- THE MEDIOCRE (CONT.) SciTech Connect Consolidates OSTI’s Information Bridge and Energy Citations database. 

SEARCH TOOLS – THE BAD OAIster Open access project started by University of Michigan—picked up by OCLC-designed to pick up hard to find grey literature Tip: Corporate/Conference Name can be very useful  Open DOAR Content Search Maintained by the University of Nottingham—very good quality control. A directory of open access directories—many scitech organizations included 

SEARCH TOOLS – THE UGLY Google Scholar – Use Advanced Search features Tip: Use ‘thesis dissertation’ in the ‘with at least one of the words’ field if you are looking for these  Google – Tip: Limit your search to a specific domain or site and use the filtertype search filter since a lot of gray literature appears as PDFs 

SUBSCRIPTION DATABASES Scopus, Web of Science—conference papers  Proquest Dissertations Abstracts--- maybe dissertations and theses?  Biosis, Compendex, GeoRef, IEEE Xplore, Inspec, Environment Sciences and Pollution Management– conference papers, meeting publications, some technical reports 

INSTITUTIONAL REPOSITORIES See Ranking Web of Repositories for a decent listing of US university repositories  Just some examples: Virginia Tech Digital Library and Archives MIT Institutional Repository 

DON’T FORGET ABOUT DATA AS A SCITECH GREYLIT RESOURCE Explosive growth, development of many resources  Databib— Major directory of data repositories--searchable   Brian Westra’s (University of Oregon library) excellent guide to data research management resources- ries.html

SCITECH GREYLIT DATABASES Agricola-- Agriculture and agriculture-related database from the USDA  arXiv-- Provides open access to nearly 800,000 e-prints in the area of physics, mathematics, computer science, quantitative biology, quantitative finance and statistics. 

SCITECH GREYLIT DATABASES II CiteSeer Digital library and search engine focused on computer and information science.  Defense Technical Information Center A searchable repository for all publicly accessible DOD science and technical research 

SCITECH GREYLIT DATABASES III ENTEWEB World Energy Base 2 International database covering all aspects of energy research. Now publicly available. IAEA’s INIS Database International Nuclear Information System database on nuclear science and technology 

SCITECH GREYLIT DATABASES IV INSPIRE-HEP A database of high energy, particle physics and astrophysics .  NASA Technical Reports Server NASA funded aerospace and related research. 

SCITECH GREYLIT DATABASES V Astrophysics Data System (NASA) 1975+ Funded by NASA, ADS maintains 3 bibliographic databases - Astronomy and Astrophysics, Physics and Geophysics, and ArXiv Preprints - containing more than 8.5 million records, and digital scans of archival materials.  PubMed-- 22 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and on-line books. 

SCITECH GREYLIT DATABASES VI National Technical Information Service Source for unclassified reports from U.S. government and international government agencies. 2 million plus records. Vendor interfaces much more user friendly. Most documents don’t wind up here.  United States Geological Service Publications Warehouse Database of USGS funded research reports and publications. 

DATABASES EXTRA-Dozens of open access technical scientific databases with primarily grey information are also available  An excellent example—listing of open access databases in geology and marine sciences from the University of New Orleans library =1400581 

FUTURE TRENDS SCITECH GREYLIT Increasing quantity—perhaps decreasing quality  More collaborative—people will be able to manipulate documents in real time  Problems with finding resources will start to be addressed—metadata should be able to provide a solution—financial incentive for government agencies/vendors to tackle this issue 


CONNECT WITH ME  Matthew Von Hendy Green Heron Information Services (240) 401-7433 LinkedIn Twitter @GreenHeronInfo FB:


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