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Getting Started with Foreign and International Law Databases

November 19, 2010

Have a research project involving foreign or international law for your coursework or journal, clinic or public service-related activities? 

Biddle Law Library offers access to a wide variety of specialized electronic resources on foreign and international law. Biddle subscribes to country-specific databases, such as iSinolaw and LawinfoChina for research on Chinese law, and InterAm for research on the law in Latin America. In addition, Penn Law students have access to subject-specific databases such as Kluwer Arbitration and World Trade Law for research on international dispute resolution, and tools like the Index to Foreign Legal Periodicals for finding articles in legal journals published outside the U.S.
Many of the key databases, websites and helpful tools for foreign and international legal research can be found quickly and easily on Biddle’s E-Resources list, which is organized by subject. Under the Foreign and International heading, you’ll find links to the sources above and many more subject- or area-specific databases. The E-Resources list also provides quick links to important governmental and intergovernmental sites, such as the U.S. State Department’s Treaty Affairs site, and to guidance on how to conduct your research, such as the GLOBALEX repository of guides written by specialists in a particular jurisdiction.
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The E-Resources List can be reached by choosing the Other Electronic Resources link within LOLA, or by selecting See All in the resources box on the Library’s Goat Page.

GF E-Resources 2 copy.jpgAnother good way to find digital resources for your project is to search LOLA using the country or topic as subject or keyword terms. If Biddle subscribes to a database in that area, it will appear in your search results, with the label “E-Resource” and a direct link to that database in the record.
Some of these databases require an individual user account, and others have slightly different interfaces than you might be used to. For help with any of these resources, and for assistance with your research project, email Gabriela Femenia, Foreign and International Law Librarian, at, or stop by Tanenbaum 412.