Research Guide for ECON 3101: Law & Economics
The following are selected resources and search tips to help you complete the essay assignment in this course. Emphasis is on Canadian sources.
Clarification & Definitions:
It is important to be able to clearly define and understand the economic and legal concepts involved in your topic. For explanations and definitions use a good textbook or a reference book such as the following:
21st Century Economics: A Reference Handbook. HB 171 .A19 2010 2 vols. REF
Black's Law Dictionary. 9th ed. KF 156 .B53 2009 REF (For U.S. law.)
Canadian Legal Words and Phrases. In LexisNexis. (Select LexisNexis from the A-Z List of Databases Quick Link on the library homepage. Select "Browse Directory Sources", then Publication Type: "Dictionaries". (The list can be limited by country.) Canadian Legal Words and Phrases provides definitions used in Canadian court and tribunal decisions, from 2000 on.
Cardiff Index to Legal Abbreviations. Use to find the full titles of Canadian, U.S., and Commonwealth legal publications.
The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics. HB 61 .C647 2008 REF
The Dictionary of Canadian Law. 3rd ed. KE 183 .D83 2004 REF
The Elgar Companion to Law and Economics. 2nd ed. K 487 .E3 E445 2005 Book Stacks
- contains chapters on specific aspects of law and economics, and on classical law and economics authors
The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics and the Law. 3 vols. K 487 .E3 N49 1998 REF
Routledge Dictionary of Economics. HB 61 .R92 2013 REF
NOTE: REF=in the Reference section on the main floor of the library.
To Find Books on Topics in Law & Economics:
Use the Library Catalogue. (First Quick Link on the library homepage)
Tips: Start with a keyword search; combine different concepts with "and"; consider alternate spellings/synonyms, etc.; broaden keywords if necessary; for the best books found, see the Subject Terms used (click on "Catalog Record"); search again using the most appropriate subject terms. For example:
kw search: 'mandatory retirement' -- (use single quotation marks for phrases)
kw search: retirement and policy -- (use "and" to find books containing both terms)
kw search: retirement and (law$ or legislation) -- (use the truncation symbol: $ to get the root word plus all possible endings; use "or" to search for synonyms or books with either of the terms; use parentheses when combining "and" and "or" in the same search.
In Exact Search, search by the exact subject term (can be a more precise search) or for ideas on related terms. For example:
Retirement, mandatory -- Canada
Age discrimination in employment -- Canada
In Advanced Keyword Search you can limit keywords to the subject field, among others.
e.g. adv. kw search: retirement in Subject and economic aspects in Subject
Some useful subject sub-headings for topics in this course:
[topic keyword] -- economic aspects
[topic keyword] -- government policy
[topic keyword] -- law and legislation
[group of people, e.g. women] -- economic conditions
[group of people, e.g. women] -- legal status, laws, etc.
To find books in the library, check that the book isn't out (a due date would show in place of the "Book Stacks" location). Copy down the call number and follow the yellow signs posted on the stairwell doors.
To Find Articles:
The library subscribes to many article databases that allow you to search for articles on your topic in many journals at once. Select the Quick Link: A-Z List of Databases on the library homepage. Then select a database by name, subject area or type of article needed.
Some recommended databases:
ProQuest (Includes Canadian and international news sources, hundreds of academic journals on business and economics, popular, trade, and professional journals, research papers and dissertations.)
TIP: Search by keyword(s) then limit to type of publication needed.
Business Source Elite (Includes hundreds of academic journals on business and economics, popular, trade, and professional journals.)
TIP: Search by keyword(s) then limit to type of publication needed.
LexisNexis Academic (Includes Canadian and international legal journals and news sources.)
TIP: For law journals, select "Browse Source Directory", then "Law Reviews & Journals". To search only Canadian law journals, select "All Canadian Legal Journals". For news, select "Legal News". Sources can be limited by country and area of law.
Science Direct (A database of academic research journals only.)
TIP: Limit the journals searched to Economics and/or related subject areas.
See also other databases listed on the A-Z List of Databases page under News, Multidisciplinary, and Economics subject sections.
Case Law Decisions:
Most cases of national interest and landmark cases are heard in the Supreme Court of Canada.
Supreme Court of Canada Judgments. By the Supreme Court and Lexum Inc. A full-text searchable database of Supreme Court judgments from 1875 to the present.
CanLII (Canadian Legal Information Institute). By the Federation of Law Societies of Canada. Provides links to the official sites for all Canadian federal and provincial/territorial caselaw and legislation available on the Internet. Sources can be searched individually or combined.
LexisNexis Academic. Select from the A-Z List of Databases page. Includes cases from Canada, the U.S. and selected other countries.
TIP: For Canadian federal and provincial court decisions from the major courts, select "Search by Subject or Topic", then "Canadian Court Cases". A wider option: Select "Browse Source Directory" from the top of the screen, then Country: Canada, then Publication Type: "Cases". (This can also be limited by region and area of law.) You can select a specific court or select: "All Canadian Court and Tribunal Case Law".
TIP: Once a source is selected, click on Ok-Continue; Enter your keywords or case name as shown; Click on Apply; then on Search.
TIP: Cases found link to citators for references to citing and cited cases. You can also search these directly (e.g. select the QuickCite Case Citator under Publication Type: "Citators & Digests").
Selected case law sites for other countries and international law are listed in the "Government Information" library subject guide.
Evaluating & Citing Sources:
Evaluate sources critically while researching; note all citation details needed up front while still selecting sources. If important pieces of information are not given (e.g. author, publication date, etc.) the source is likely not suitable for an academic essay.
See the "Research Help" tab on the library website for tip sheets on writing, researching, evaluating, and citing sources.
The "Academic Integrity: Avoiding Plagiarism" section has advice on how to avoid plagiarism and why citing sources is important.
The "Cite Your Sources" section has links to brief guides explaining how to use common citation styles like APA, Chicago, etc. For examples and explanations of how to cite legal sources, see Legal Citation by Queen's University Law Library, based on The Canadian Guide to Uniform Legal Citation. 8th ed. KE 259 .C34 2014 REF
Need help? Librarians are available to help you at the Research Help Desk on the main floor of the library and at email@example.com
For questions specific to this course you can also contact the Economics subject librarian: Anita Cannon