Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Define and Understand the Problem or Policy
Encyclopedias and policy papers can help you define and and understand the problem you are trying to solve or the policy you are trying it analyze. They can give a short history of past and present policy, which can help you put the issue in context.
Research Reports and Policy Papers
CQ Researcher plus Archive
Unbiased research reports on timely topics, for example:Health Care Reform
, Immigration Conflict
and Legalizing Marijuana
. Each report provide a introduction, overview, background, current situation, outlook chronology, pro/con/, biblipgraphy, etc. Keyword search for additional reports, reports also show links to other relevant reports.
CRS Reports. 1916-2003
A "think tank" that provides reports to members of Congress on a variety of topics relevant to current political events. Congressional Research Service (CRS) is the public policy research arm of Congress.
Comprehensive digital library of public policy research containing over 30,000 documents.
Reports and information produced by prominent policy institutes, ‘think tank’ and non-governmental organizations.
Nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND focuses on the issues that matter most such as health, education, national security, international affairs, law and business, the environment, and more. With a research staff consisting of some of the world's preeminent minds, RAND has been expanding the boundaries of human knowledge for more than 60 years.
United States Conference of Mayors
Official non-partisan organization of cities with populations of 30,000 or more. There are 1,296 such cities in the country today. Each city is represented in the Conference by its chief elected official, the mayor.
The primary roles of The U.S. Conference of Mayors are to: Promote the development of effective national urban/suburban policy; Strengthen federal-city relationships; Ensure that federal policy meets urban needs; Provide mayors with leadership and management tools; and Create a forum in which mayors can share ideas and information.
Julie Chen, Librarian
Sorrells Engineering & Science Library, Wean Hall
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, PA 15213