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Poli 102J/USP 110: Advanced Topics - Urban Politics: Websites

Local Governments of San Diego Google Custom Search Engine

This custom search tool will search only the government web sites of San Diego County (including cities, county, and SANDAG).

Search Engines

Search tip: Use these Google Custom Search Engines to search for current online documents, publications, and websites from IGOs, NGOs, governmental and policy organizations.


Google Search Tips

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase.  “green buildings”

Use OR (capitalized) to search for sites that may use one word instead of another. Without the OR, the search defaults to AND and finds only sites that include both terms.   buildings OR architecture

Use quotes and OR to search for either of multiple phrases.  "green buildings" OR "sustainable architecture"

Add a dash (-) before a word to exclude all results that include that word; can also be used before a site to exclude results from that site. This is especially useful for words with multiple meanings, like green the color and green the environmental term.     green buildings -paint sustainability (this will exclude wikipedia hits) Post-class update: it looks like the dash is no longer supported for complex searches like -(fatalities OR accidents) but does still work for terms listed individually like -fatalities -accidents.

Use site: to limit your search to a specific website or domain. “public health” (this will return hits only from the CDC website)  |  “public health” (this will return hits from any .gov website)

Use parentheses to combine and search for similar terms.  (green OR sustainable) (buildings OR architecture)

Use filetype: to limit your search to a specific type of document. "green buildings" filetype:pdf (this will only find .pdf files; other filetype choices include html, ppt, and doc; note that you can also exclude certain filetypes by using the dash before the word filetype)

Combine two or more of these for power searching.   “(green OR sustainable) (buildings OR architecture)"  -“new york” ( OR filetype:pdf

Archival Collections of Books, Government Documents, Websites, etc.

Many libraries, museums, and other cultural institutions are continuously working to digitize texts, audio & video files, images, and other material to make them widely available via the Internet. 

Because copyright law may limit the ability to digitize more "recent" material, these digital collections are especially useful for historical material. They also generally have many government publications, which are not always protected by copyright and may therefore include very recent information.