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Legal literature

Introduction

This guide offers an overview of important resources for finding (international) legal literature. Follow the steps/instructions and find legal books, articles and journals quickly and efficiently.
See the research guides for an overview of books and journals in a specific field of law.
Refer to the guide Juridische literatuur for Dutch articles and journals.

Explanation of resources
Catalogue: provides information on availability and call numbers of books, journals, and more in the library.
Bibliography: contains references to/overview of articles or books, usually not linked to availability in a library.
Journal collections: search in full-text digital journals and download or print articles.

Do you need help or do you have suggestions or comments? Please contact us.

Books (resources)

  • UvA CataloguePlus
    Availability and location of books, theses, (e-)journals and more in the UvA library collections.
  • WorldCat Discovery
    Contains materials from more than a thousand libraries all over the world, including catalogues from all Dutch universities, all fields of science, and in various languages. It is possible to request items from other Dutch libraries through ILL.
    Note: You cannot request books that are also available in the UvA collection yourself in WorldCat Discovery. If a book is out on loan at the UvA, please contact the library to make a request at another library.

Find a specific book

First, use CataloguePlus to see if the book is available in the UvA collection. If not, go to WorldCat Discovery to see if it is available at other libraries in the Netherlands.

1) UvA CataloguePlus
•  Choose Advanced search and select UvA books+;
•  Search using a combination of the author's last name and specific title words;
•  If needed, use the options in the menu on the right to refine the results. Select Sort by Date-newest to see the latest edition at the top;
•  Click on the title to find out availability, location number and loan status, or
•  Click (if available) on View online or Online access for the digital version.

2) WorldCat Discovery
•  Search by combination of the author's last name and specific title words; select Sorted by: Best Match or Recency at the top left;
•  Use the options in the menu on the left to refine your search results and select Format: Print Book;
•  Click on a book title, then scroll down and click Request this item via interlibrary loan;
•  Refer to the manual for more information about placing an ILL request;
•  Choose the location where you want to collected requested books. Copies/scans will be sent by email;
•  Please note it is not possible to request e-books via WorldCat Discovery.

Search for books on a specific subject

1) UvA CataloguePlus
•  Choose Advanced search and select UvA books+;
•  Select Any field or Subject and enter a subject in the search field;
•  In the search result, use the options on the right-hand side to refine further if necessary;
•  Check Available at to find out location, location number and lending status, or
•  Click (if available) on View online or Online access for the digital version.

2) WorldCat Discovery
•  Enter a subject in the search box;
•  Use the filters in the menu on the left to refine your search results and select Format: Print Book;
•  Click on a book title, then scroll down and click Request this item via interlibrary loan;
•  Refer to the manual for more information about placing an ILL request;
•  Choose the location where you want to collected requested books. Copies/scans will be sent by email;
•  Please note it is not possible to request e-books via WorldCat Discovery.

Refer to the research guides for a selection of important (text)books in specific fields of law.
The books in the Law Library collection are placed according to fields of law. A floor plan can be found here.

Articles and journals (resources)

For Dutch articles and journals, refer to the guide Juridische literatuur - Artikelen en tijdschriften.

  • Beck-online
    German legal library with (text)books, commentaries, journal collection, case law and more.
  • CataloguePlus 
    Find (references to) articles from (e-)journals in many disciplines. It also searches UvA-DARE, the Academic Repository of the University of Amsterdam.
  • Google Scholar
    Search for scholarly literature and sources (articles, theses, books, abstracts and court opinions) from academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other websites. Contains the UvA-linker (when used within the UvA domain).
  • HeinOnline
    US and international law journal collection grouped by law discipline, legal classics, treaties library, world constitutions, and more.
  • Nexis Uni
    Contains among other things law reviews, journals, case law and legal news. Click on Menu (top left hand) and select All sources. Narrow on the left side by Category.
  • SSRN (Social Science Research Network)
    Contains full-text research papers from researchers in 70 disciplines, including the Legal Scholarship Network.
  • Westlaw: World Journals
    The World Journals collection contains 1.000 leading international journals and law reviews from the US, Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Canada. To quickly search this elaborate collection, search for ‘World Journals’ in the search box from the start page or use the quick link above.
  • WorldCat Discovery
    Global catalogue contains references to journals and articles from more than a thousand libraries all over the world, all fields of science and various languages. It is possible to request items from other Dutch libraries via ILL.

Find a specific article or journal

1) CataloguePlus
•  Select Journals at the top of the page and type the journal title in the search box;
•  In the search result, click on the journal title to view its availability;
•  Paper edition: look under Location items to find out what years are available and in which library;
•  Online edition: click on the link under View online to go directly to the online journal.

2) WorldCat Discovery
Find out if the journal (article) is available at another Dutch library via WorldCat Discovery:
•  Enter the titel of the journal or article in the search field (use "..." to phrase the title);
•  Click on the title, scroll down and click Request this item via interlibrary loan to request a copy of the article;
•  Refer to the manual for more information about placing an ILL request.

For authoritative journals in a specific field of law, refer to the research guides.

Search for journals or articles on a topic

We recommend using all resources listed below.

  • Beck-online
    Click Detailsuche and select ‘Aufsätze’ to search for articles. Optionally, enter a subject below Rechtsgebiete. Enter a search term and click on search (magnifying glass). Please note that access to BeckOnline is only available within the UvA buildings (access from home only via UvAVPN).
  • Google Scholar
    When using Google Scholar within the UvA domain the UvA-Linker will appear to provide you with the full-text of an article if the library has a subscription.
  • HeinOnline:
    Click on Law Journal Library to start searching the journal collection. Click on Advanced Search to combine a Text search with a subject (under Search by PathFinder Subject).
  • SSRN (Social Science Research Network)
    Search by entering keywords in the search box or browse the subject areas within the Legal Scholarship Network.
  • UvA CataloguePlus
    Enter keywords in the search box and refine your results with the options on the right.
  • Westlaw - World Journals
    Open Advanced search. Use the field All of these terms en use the Connectors and Expanders to limit or broaden your result.
  • WorldCat Discovery
    Enter your topic in the search box. Use the menu on the left side to refine your search results and to filter on Format: Article or Journal.

Search tips and more

In case of too many or limited hits:
• ​ use Advanced search or 'adjust search to filter by location, language or document type​​​​​​;
•  also try searching with synonyms or word variations;
•  use special search characters (“ ”,*, ?, !, #, AND, NOT, OR) if possible.

Refer to the guide Searching, writing and citing for an instruction on how to use special search characters and more search tips.