[Population Index on the Web]

Search by Author

You can search Population Index by author entering one or more names in the author field. We illustrate the procedure for both personal and corporate authors.

Personal Authors

Personal authors have one or more surnames, often followed by a name and/or initials. Sample entries in the database include "Coale, Ansley J." and "McDonald, John W". We include all authors of each citation, not just the first.

Instead of indexing authors, our search engine uses an index of words that appear in the author field. Thus, the first example is indexed under "Coale" and "Ansley", while the second is indexed under "McDonald" and "John". Note that we ignore initials and punctuation marks. We also ignore diacritical marks.

To search this field we recommend that you specify surnames and, optionally, first names. The order is immaterial. The output will consist of the entries that include all the words you have specified, as the following examples illustrate.

Example 1: To retrieve a list of papers by Ansley Coale, type "Coale" in the author field. Since Ansley is the only Coale in our database, you will get exactly what you want.

Example 2: To trace a paper written by Anne Pebley and Noreen Goldman, type "Pebley Goldman" in the author field. The search engine will return all entries that have both "Pebley" and "Goldman" in the author field, regardless of who is the first author. It will also include papers with additional authors, if any. Note that the names are joined with an implicit and.

Example 3: You want to find a paper by John McDonald. If you type "McDonald" you will get a number of false hits, including entries by Anne, Elaine, John, Peter, and Stacy McDonald. In this case, we recommend that you add the first name, and search for "John McDonald". This will retrieve all papers that have the words "John" and "McDonald" in the author field, including most (if not all) of the citations you need. You may miss a paper if the journal listed the author as J. W. McDonald, since we ignore initials. You may also get a few false hits; for example you will get a paper written by John Casterline and Peter McDonald.

Corporate Authors

Corporate authors tend to have long names, such as "United Kingdom. Office of Population Censuses and Surveys [OPCS] (London, England)." They often (but not always) start with the name of a country, followed by the name of an institution, an optional acronym, the name of a subdivision if appropriate, and a location (city and country).

Since we index every word in the name, you just need to type enough to uniquely identify the author.

Example 1: You want to check a reference to a United Nations publication. If you search for "United Nations," you will get 617 hits. To narrow down the search, try an acronym, such as "CELADE" (97 hits) or "UNFPA" (99 hits), or a few key words, such as "United Nations Population Division" (121 hits).

Example 2: You need to find a publication by the national statistical office of a certain country. Your best bet is to type the name of the country, and optionally, an acronym or a word from the name of the organization. To find the Office of Population Censuses and Surveys in the UK, try "OPCS". You will get 82 hits. If you type "United Kingdom Censuses" you will get the same 82 hits, but the query will probably take longer.

Example 3: To find a publication by the Instituto Nacional de Estadística in Uruguay, try "Uruguay Estadistica" (34 hits). A similar strategy for Chile yields many false hits, because publications by the statistical offices in other countries (Argentina, Colombia, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay) are often co-authored with CELADE, which is located in Chile. Typing Chile in the region field solves the problem. In fact, a combination of author and region is probably best in all cases.