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Whether it is keywords like 'cholesterol', 'biodiversity', or 'methane' here is how to quickly find what you are looking for.

Image by Jules Bss

Understanding and Searching our Database

We are continually gathering the best articles regarding plant and animal agriculture, related to environment, health, zoonoses, economics and policy. 

  • Key Articles with Summaries: The Environment, Health, and Economics and Policy sections contain extensive reference lists with summaries of highly important articles.  For most people, it is the best place to start your browsing and search!  You can search directly by pressing Ctrl F (windows) or Cmnd F (mac) within the document.  Search for any keyword you are looking for i.e. “cholesterol” or “methane”.  Be savvy: if looking for information on heart disease, then search “heart”
    but also search related terms such as “cardiac”. Even savvier, search the term “cardi” which is the root of the words “cardiovascular” and “cardiac”, thus enabling
    you to identify all relevant summaries including these words.

  • Full Libraries: Our full databases, or “libraries" of papers, are accessible to EVERYONE.  They are organized into folders that can be browsed.  Unfortunately, the search function within Google Drive shows incomplete results for visitors.  But here is how we have organized each library of articles so you can find the important articles you need.

  1. Each library is organized by topic and subtopic, as you'll see when you start browsing. See 'Food and Environment', 'Fish and Oceans', 'Health and Nutrition', 'Zoonoses', and 'Economics and Policy' for each of the respective libraries.

  2. Articles are organized chronologically by date of publication.  Sometimes we put articles in their own folders, where we add related news articles or important articles that were referenced.  Such folders are always named with the year of publication at the beginning of the title.

  3. An article that is relevant to more than one topic will be filled in all relevant folders, so there is often more than one copy article pertaining to multiple topics/subtopics.​

    • a) For such articles, the title will usually indicate the "main folder”, which designates the main working copy of an article. Often we add additional notes and highlights to an article, and the main working copy will be updated. We hope such notes and highlights will help critical minds! Consider going to
      the relevant folder and looking at the main copy of the article. 

    • b) The words “main folder - [subfolder] - [subfolder] … will be tagged at the end of the title of the article to indicate the main folder.

    • c) The title may indicate the main library which contains the folder and subfolder of the article. For example the words “main folder – PBD - Health - [subfolder] - [subfolder] … may occur.  In this case the term “health” indicates
      that the main folder is in the Health Library, or “enviro” indicates the main copy of the article is in the Environment Library. “infectious ds zoonosis” or similar terms indicate the corresponding library.

      • ​The term “PBD”, an acronym for Plant Based Data, may precede the name of the library and is simply a more recent naming convention.

      • If the name of the library is not indicated, then presume that the main folder is within the same library where you have found the article. For
        example, the article “2020 ** Increasing anthropogenic methane emissions arise equally from agricultural and fossil fuel sources - main
        folder -  enviro - climate change - methane” is found in multiple folders.  The main working copy is found in the “environment library” - “climate” folder - “methane” subfolder.

  4. Sometimes a folder will be empty, except to have another folder or text document inside, the title of which says “SEE Main Folder - [folder] - [subfolder]…

    • This text doc or folder serves as a sign post, telling you where to find the main folder which contains the relevant articles.  

    • For example in the "Climate Change" folder in the Environment library, there is a folder titled “Land Use”.  But the folder only contains another folder titled "SEE Main Folder - Land use Folder - Climate”. That means one should go to the full environment folder, then to the "Land Use Change Deforestation” folder.  There you will find a folder titled “Climate Change”, which will contain articles pertaining to both land use and climate change.  This allows the database to reduce the duplicate folders that pertain to more than one topic.  We hope this is not too confusing, but as you use the database it will become easily understandable.  

  5. The staring systems highlight articles of particular interest.  You will notice that some articles have one or more asterisk after the year of publication.

    • A single * means an article is noteworthy.
    • Three *** means that is of greater significance, with some very key information.
    • ​Two ** means that the PBD team feels an article is of even higher importance, enough for us to include in our summary of key articles.  
      • Yes, we realize that the two ** and three *** designations should be swapped to make more sense.  We will make such a change when we learn how to rename the articles en masse. 
      • Finally, sometimes you will see a folder with a * at the end of a folder title.  That means there are important articles within that folder, so take a peek!

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