da|ra help

Simple and advanced searches offer users the opportunity to search from among all holdings of registered research datasets from social science and economics as well as in the holdings of the OECD library.
Facetted searching enables users to easily narrow the search to their needs.
There is also the  "Resolve DOI", field which directly "solves" the DOI name (string) in that it returns the object persistently identified by this DOI.

Please see here for help for filling in the form (registered users only).

Quick search in metadata

Enter free-text keywords in the Metadata search field to search in the available metadata. All metadata in a multitude of database fields will be searched. Datasets will then be displayed in which the search term does not appear in the title, but only in the metadata of the resource. 
To search the precise title of a resource please use the title search field within the advanced search option. 

Example: Enter the term „demography“, all datasets containing the term demography in their metadata will be displayed.
The quick search can be supported by facets. This is especially useful as faceted searching begins with broader terminology.
Facets function as a filter, and by using these, the results list can theoretically be broken down to a particular result.
Should the desired result not be displayed, even after trying several filters, then the advanced search is the next level to try.

Resolve DOI

The „Resolve DOI“ field can be used when you already have the DOI name for a publication found on the internet, or the printed version, and this DOI name is already registered with da|ra. If you would like to learn more about the object behind this then simply enter the DOI name in the Resolve DOI field provided and click “GO!” to be taken directly to the digital object (book, journal, article, data, graphic, presentation, etc.) or to a detailed description.

DOI Resolution is made possible by the  Handle System Technology. Simply enter the text string, followed by the DOI name in the address bar of a preferred browser. 

Example: A DOI name of doi:"10.4232/1.11004" would be resolved from the address: „“.
Resolution of a DOI name is to the stored and controlled metadata information. This offers the user a rapid, comprehensive and inclusive overview of a multitude of entries on the dataset, such as, for example, title, survey period, creator, content, etc. The actual dataset can be reached with just a click, and access to the dataset is subject to existing conditions related to its storage location.

Placeholders for truncation

Placeholders (Wildcards) are valid entries in all search fields. 
Truncation essentially means “to cut back to the stem or root/trunk”. Truncating allows placeholders to be used in lieu of a particular character series. Use one truncation character for a chosen number of characters. 
Valid truncation characters are:

  • Asterisk "*"

  • Question mark "?"

The asterisk ("*") as a wildcard supplements any number of characters. If the truncation character is placed at the end of a word, then terms are sought from the root onward; searching all possible endings of a word or consisting of multiple words with that root.

Example: An advanced search employing the title search field and entering the term work* means the hits will encompass all datasets whose titles begin with work and end however, such as, for example: workableworkmanship, working, etc.
A quick search using the term work* in the metadata will return all datasets whose metadata contain the term work in some form or other (compound words or the word work with different endings or a second part).

The query will find for example...


Question mark ("?") is used as a placeholder to represent zero to one character and can also be used within a word.

Example: When searching datasets with the terms „woman“ and „women“ the "?" holds the letters’ place („wom?n“) representing the letters „a“ and „e“.

The query will find for example...
wom?n woman

Without an asterisk only the exact term entered in the relevant field will be searched. 

Phrase search

Phrase search is used to search for multiple terms which should be in exact series next to one another. This is particularly helpful when both terms also appear often individually in a document.
For a phrase search, the contiguous search terms are placed inside quotes. The quotes must enclose the character string with no spaces.
Phrase searches are particularly well suited for searching persons, places or company names, and the like.

Example: „Federal Statistics Office“, „German Research Foundation“

Advanced search

(Note: Currently, search terms are linked with the "AND" operator.) 

The advanced search can help refine your search query and reduce the amount of hits.
Several input fields are available in the advanced search.


Select this search field when seeking a particular title. The entire title can be entered or just the important words of the title.

Example: Attitude of Young People in the Country after the Political Turning Point
in the GDR 1990 
or Young People Country Political Turning Point


A DOI name can be entered into the search field to determine whether this DOI name is registered with da|ra and what metadata is assigned to it. Once the DOI name has been entered into the search field and when the DOI name sought is available all metadata results pertaining to it will be displayed.

Example: 10.4232/1.0132


The Version search field is predominantly useful in combination with a title search when several versions are known to exist.

Example: 1.1.0 or 2.0.0
All resources available in Version 1.1.0 will be displayed. Searching for a particular version is best done in combination with a resource title as otherwise the hits list is too large.


If the name of the creator is known, enter this name or affiliated institution in the search field. 
Entering only the creator’s family name in the search field means that all creators with this last name will be displayed.
If seeking a particular institution, the hits list will simultaneously also display, along with the institution, those creators affiliated with the sought institution.

Example Ziegler, Rolf or ZUMA

Publication Date: 

Searching for a publication date is recommended for resources which are continuously carried out, to narrow the number of hits returned. For this the publication date must be inserted in the format YYYY-MM-DD or YYYY only. 

Data provider: 

To search for resources offered by a particular data provider (or research data center, etc.) from da|ra then use this search field within the advanced search.

Example: ZPID or Leibniz Institute for Psychology Information

Pre-defined facets help advanced search to narrow the results.

Faceted search

Faceted searching is a way to search whereby the search results are refined by filtering according to specific criteria (facets). Facets offer users the opportunity to easily narrow the search, tailoring it according to their requirements. 
da|ra filters the following facets: 

  • resource types

  • data provider

  • creator

  • contributor

  • collection mode

  • keywords (controlled)

  • availability

  • publication date

Searching a title, keyword or data provider initially delivers all search results listed one after another and also presented in facets. The search results can be further narrowed by selecting additional facets. Example: Someone using the quick search to locate resources on the topic Unemployment, but requires only results from 1989. Faceted searching filters the search query according to various facets, the year 1989 can be chosen and the results even further narrowed by using other facets.


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