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Journal Orientation 2020: Emory International Law Review


Remember, journal students have a dedicated Virtual Journal Support Desk, in addition to our general Virtual Reference Desk.  Use either link to talk with a Research Librarian during these hours:

Virtual Journal Support Reference Desk (August 10, 2020 - November 13, 2020):
     Tuesdays, 10am - 1pm
     Thursdays: 3pm - 6pm
     Fridays: 1pm - 4pm 

Virtual Reference Desk (August 17, 2020 - December 11, 2020):
(Meeting ID: 930 5184 4067)

     Monday - Thursday: 9am - 5pm
     Friday: 9am - Noon
     Saturday - Sunday: Closed.

General Question for the Library?
Please complete this Questions for the Law Library? form.

Request a one-on-one Consultation:
Please complete our Student Research Request form. 

About This Page

This page provides starting points for information relevant to your journal and covers the following topics:

  • Emory Law Subject Guides 
  • Electronic Resources
  • Choosing a Topic
  • Citation Assistance
  • Where to find PDF versions of documents
  • Preemption checks

As always, if you need additional assistance, please request a Student Consult and we will be glad to help.  

Emory Law Subject Guides

Use research guides to find resources and links specific to foreign and international law.

Academic and Journal Writing:

Foreign and Comparative Law

International Law

Seminar research guides include updated resources on many foreign and international law topics.

Other collections of research guides you might find helpful include: 

Electronic Resources and Starting Points

You might need to start by learning a little about foreign or international law. These resources will also be useful as sources for your research.

The same study aids on reserve that have gotten you through your classes will also provide an introduction to international law and other legal topics. 

Oxford Public International Law databases:

Hein Online Foreign & International Law Databases:

ASIL Benchbook on International Law : An introduction to international law issues arising in U.S. courts.

CRS Reports from the Congressional Research Service include background reports on topics in US foreign relations, treaty practice, and other international law subjects. Find them in,, a larger collection including older reports in ProQuest Congressional, and a collection specific to foreign relations and national security from the Federation of American Scientists. 

The Law Library of Congress also produces research reports for Congress on foreign and comparative law topics. 

Foreign Law Guide:  Contains primary and secondary sources of foreign law for more than 170 jurisdictions, including citations to major individual statutes for each country.

NYU GlobaLex Guides: Detailed guides to research in the law of an extensive list of jurisdictions, plus guides to doing comparative law research.

Getting the Deal Through: Reports by jurisdiction and practice area on issues in tax, data protection, banking, commercial law, trade, and intellectual property, with summaries of the law and citations to laws, regulations, and cases, and a jurisdiction comparison feature. Also available on Bloomberg Law in Reference Materials and on Lexis

 Practical Law Global Guides and Cross-Border Topics (Westlaw): Q&A Guides by topic and jurisdiction in practice areas including banking, competition law, insolvency, international trade, and employment law, with a country comparison tool. 

Security Council Report: Tracks issues considered by the UN Security Council and collects the relevant Security Council Reports and other documents. 

Choosing a Topic

Many of the sources listed above as Starting Points include recent developments and can be used to browse for potential topics - look for recent CRS Reports, and find updates and new issues in Getting the Deal Through and the Security Council Report.

Legal news and current awareness sources might give you suggestions for issues and cases to research for your comment.

American Society of International Law blogs:

Blogs on national security:

Global Legal Monitor (Law Library of Congress): Includes legal news by topic or jurisdiction

Jurist World Legal News

Bloomberg Law news databases in international law practice areas, including:

International Law Blogs: Justia Blawgsearch, ABA Blawg Directory , Opinio Juris, International Law Prof Blog, IntLawGrrls

News sources with good world coverage: New York Times, NPR, CNN, BBC, The Guardian

Citation Assistance

As you work on your spading assignments, you will encounter unfamiliar citations, and you will want to properly cite materials in your own work. Besides your personal copy of the Bluebook, you might use:

Bluebook Rules 20 and 21 and T2 are on citations to foreign and international law. The T2 tables on foreign jurisdictions are available free on the Electronic Bluebook. 

The newest edition is the 21st edition. The library has copies of the 20th edition of the Bluebook on reserve; check one out from the Service Desk.

 But if you need more help:

Find citation examples and rules in a free online source The Indigo Book. 

Bieber's Dictionary of Legal AbbreviationsLook up legal abbreviations, and find citation form for legal materials using this book available in Library Reference. 

The Greenbook: International Citator and Research Guide: 6-volume set (in progress) with citation rules for foreign and international materials. Service Desk-Reference collection:K89 .I58 2018

Raistrick’s Index to Legal Citations & Abbreviations (British, with more UK and European citations than the Bluebook):  Service Desk - Reference collection

NYU Guide to Foreign and International Legal Citations: Service Desk - Reference collection

University of Minnesota Frequently-Cited Treaties guide with citation form

Oxford Law Citator (Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Law and Oxford Law Reports): Mouse over or click on linked document names to retrieve a full citation

Hein Online Law Journal Library (and other libraries): The Citation Navigator available in most Hein libraries lets you enter a citation and retrieve the document, and there is also a Bluebook Citation list of journals.

Where to Find PDFs

You will want to find digitized materials as PDF images of the original or official document when you can, so you can be sure that the text and page citation of the original matches the citation you are checking, and so you can save and share the document. Not every resource is available online, and those that are may not be available as PDF images. But some of the sources for PDF documents are: 

West Reporters on Westlaw

Hein Online collections with documents in PDF include:

  • US Treaties
  • UN Treaties
  • International Court of Justice
  • European Court of Justice Reports
  • Canadian materials
  • U.S. and some non-U.S. law journals

JSTOR: law and non-law journals, many from other countries

HathiTrust Digital Library of digitized books, manuscripts, and historical documents. 

The Making of Modern Law databases have digitized historical treatises and primary materials, including foreign materials. 

Many of the Emory's ebook databases have books and treatises in PDF or other image formats. Find them by searching titles in discoverE

United Nations Documents and United Nations Treaties

Official Journal of the European Union

Official Gazettes and primary documents for many countries are online, frequently in PDF.  Find links using the Law Library of Congress: Guide to Law Online: Nations of the World. The Bluebook's new T2 tables for foreign jurisdictions include links to some foreign law sources as well. 


You will need to do a preemption check to make sure that your idea is original. To do this, you should do a thorough search of the legal literature to determine if another author has already published on your topic, using the same analysis as yours. 

Start by compiling a list of search terms that will retrieve any articles similar to your proposed comment.

Search for recent law review articles on your topic in the law journal databases on Westlaw and Lexis. If your proposed comment is based on a case or statute, you should also use Keycite on Westlaw and Shepards on Lexis to find articles analyzing the case or statute.

You might also search in the Current Index to Legal Periodicals on Westlaw, a weekly index service arranged by subject area to find the most recent law journal articles in a subject area. 

To find working papers and pending law review articles, search the abstracts in the Legal Scholarship Network, a division of SSRN, and the articles in the bepress Legal Repository. Academic legal blogs, such as the Legal Theory Blog and the blogs in the Law Professor Blogs Network, sometimes post announcements of new legal scholarship.

You should also check for books and book chapters that might have been published on your topic, using discoverE, the Emory University Libraries catalog, and WorldCat, a catalog of the holdings of U.S. and international libraries. 

Be sure to keep checking for new articles on your topic, and other developments that might affect your research, using alerts on Westlaw and Lexis, and by following topical legal blogs and newsletters. 

Some other legal research guides on preemption include:

Subject Guide