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Comparative Law Research Guide: Online Library Support

Online library support for comparative law study and research

Comparative law is the study of differences and similarities between the law of different countries.


Introductory reading

Print Books in Lasok Law Library

Want to browse the print book collection on comparative law? 

See the KB section in the Lasok Law Library. Forum Library

Recommended Research Guides

Online support guides from the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, highlighting the key sources of law and secondary materials for each country.

Your Law Librarian @ Exeter

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Lee Snook
Subjects: Law

This online guide highlights some of the key texts and journals you can use to support your comparative law research. Guidance is also provided on using Library Search and the online databases to find relevant books, articles, and full text legal sources from various jurisdictions. 

View the full Law Subject Guide for guidance on other legal materials

Library Search

Search across the print and online collections for books, chapters, articles, journals and lots more. 

Library Search will help you discover books, journals, articles, audio visual material and more on your chosen topic. This is a good place to start when you are beginning to research a topic as you can draw on content from a variety of different sources.

For more in depth research in databases and archives, use the A-Z Databases List.

How to use Library Search

Library search is a good starting point for your research. You can use it to discover book and journal article content related to comparative law topics and jurisdictions.  

 Below are some suggested searches that show how you can target selective comparative law materials. 

1. Search for comparative law and a topic / area of law

e.g. comparative law contract

comparative law intellectual property

2. Search for comparative law and a jurisdiction

comparative law greece
 comparative law france

3. Search for comparative law and a combination of topic and jurisdiction

comparative law contract greece 
comparative law intellectual property australia

Using Online Resources for Comparative Law Research

You will be familiar with using the online legal databases for research on your other law modules.

Key databases such as Lexis and Westlaw  both have large collections of US materials and a varying degree of material from other jurisdictions around the world.   

You need to access the international materials from separate menu area in Lexis & Westlaw - they are not discoverable from the entry search screens which are UK focused.

Guidance material on finding and using this international content is available on the adjacent tabs.

Other resources that are also useful for comparative law research are also highlighted

If you need additional support, just get in touch with the Law Librarian

Use the International menu to access content from non UK jurisdictions. . The type and amount of materials differs hugely across the varying jurisdictions.

You can also search for comparative law commentary within the journal coverage.

Use the Lexis Guide for support as you search.

You will be familiar with using Westlaw from your UK legal research. Use the Legal Journals Index to search for commentary on comparative law topics

International Materials are also available on Westlaw. The extent of coverage differs vastly between the different jurisdictions.

Westlaw International Materials - Support Material

The World legal Information Institute provides free, independent and non-profit access to worldwide law, through collaboration with the various national and regional legal institutes. You can use it to explore the legal materials that are freely available for particular countries around the world. Find out more about WorldLII.

Choose a Country from the menu to discover the available sources 

The entry for Greece is shown below.  You can search or browse the categories to find full text content.


JSTOR is a valuable research resource for secondary resources.  You can use it to search and find the full text of published books and journal articles. Use the How to Search JSTOR LibGuide for an introduction to the service, or take a look at JSTOR's Vimeo channel for instructional videos.

JSTOR is a vast resource and may return thousands of results for a basic search, as shown below.

You can add additional search terms and apply search limits to manage your search results.  The Publication Date range is a good way of limiting our results to up to date content.

About This Database

World Constitutions Illustrated contains thousands of contemporary and historical documents, as well as many features to enable browsing and searching across constitutional law of more than 190 countries. This is a picture of what is included:

  • Current constitution of every country.
  • Constitutional histories of all countries.
  • Thousands of books on constitutional law, with specific titles and chapters tied to specific countries.
  • Thousands of articles about constitutional development.
  • Links to online resources related to political development.
  • Bibliographies of constitutional monographs.

The database is updated monthly with new constitutions and amendments and new constitutional documents.

Use the French Law LibGuide for guidance on finding French Law resources.


Use the GermanLaw LibGuide for guidance on finding German Law resources.


The Oxford Compendium of National Legal Responses to Covid-19

Oxford Compendium of National Legal Responses to Covid-19If you are looking into comparative legal responses relating to Covid-19, take a look at  The Oxford Compendium of National Legal Responses to Covid-19.

This is a global academic collaboration mapping legal responses to Covid-19 in dozens of participating countries and territories. Each entry is structured identically and explores the role of public law, institutional adaptation, public health measures, social and labour policy, and human rights measures introduced or applied as a response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Each jurisdiction has a companion page on the Lex-Atlas Covid-19 website, on which further updates and relevant information are held

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