Why use government information?

Government information can take many forms. Anything published or generated by governments at all levels--including local, state, federal, and international--fall under government information. These can be documents or reports from the President and their staff; the workings of Congress including hearings and transcripts; reports, data, and other information created or disseminated by employees of government agencies like the Department of Agriculture, Environmental Protection Agency, and the State Department; court documents created in the course of official judicial duties, and much more in other formats such as data/statistics, maps, and more. 

Government information is an important resource since it can show the direct workings of government, and in this way, it serves as a primary source. In other ways, governments and their employees publish and provide information about a variety of topics to inform the public, which can also serve as a secondary source about a subject or topic. Government information spans all subject areas and is useful to researchers across disciplines.

Need more help? Contact Alicia Kubas as the government information librarian or feel free to use the general government information email for help or questions. 

Getting started

Libraries search: Start with a keyword search and then use the filtering options on the right to limit by Material Type to Government Documents.

Use the call number (or SuDoc number) from the library search (for example "SI 6.2:B 13/2" or "Y 4.Ag 8/2:Al 6") and What Shelf is My Government Document On? to find the item in the Libraries. However, many government documents are available online as well.

See the Libraries Government Publications website for much more detailed help with government information.

More ways to find government information

Check out one of the following research guides to get started in finding specific types of government information:

Last Updated: Jul 28, 2021 10:47 AM