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Research Guides

ALED 481 - Agricultural Leadership (Fall 2019)

Need to Know: Finding Government Publications with Google

A lot of US government information is freely available and searchable on the web. Using Google is pretty effective using the site limiter with your term.  Just type, for example:
biosurveillance site:.gov 
 
This will find any url ending in .gov with biosurveillance in the text.
 
.gov is used by some cities, counties, states and federal government entities use: there are, or course, other urls that may be relevant, such as .tx.us or .org or .mil.  Then just modify the search for these endings.
 
This type of search can also be used to search the longer url:
  • Defense Department info is site:.defense.gov or site:.dod.gov (both are used)
  • French government documents can be found with site:.gouv.fr while Spanish government documents are site:.gob.es
The convention is not universal but it can help locate and narrow information down government information.  State government sites may have various url syntaxes that need to be taken into account:
  • California has site:.ca.gov
  • Texas mainly uses site:.tx.us
  • Florida uses site:.fl.us; however the Governor's site is site:.flgov.com and the various agencies have different url roots.
For some information on the ranking factors Google uses in its search:

US Policy Sources

Congressional Research Service (CRS) Reports are being collected and made available to the general public through Demand Progress in collaboration with the Congressional Data Coalition — a bipartisan coalition founded by Demand Progress and the R Street Institute to promote open legislative information.

Census Data

The US Census is the leading source of quality data about the nation's people and economy. They collect data through the Decennial Census of Population and HousingEconomic Census, Census of Governments, American Community Survey and other programs.

Legislative Data Sources

US Polling and Public Opinion