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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Multilingual Electronic Resources for Slavic, East European & Eurasian Studies: INION

A guide to 13 databases with significant content in both English and the languages of the region

New Interface

The unified INION database can now only be accessed through EBSCO. On most subscribing libraries' database resources portals, this can be accessed by typing "Russian Acaedmy of Sciences Bibliographies." This allows patrons to search INION via basic or advanced search using terms in Russian, written in Cyrillic, although searching in Latin script can also be useful for some searches. The EBSCO interface allows patrons to see immediately if the record viewed is held by the university providing the subscription access to EBSCO, and furthermore if it is available in full-text online (also through their host institution subscription). Online bibliographic records are thus available from INION starting in 1977, although not all records during those years are available.

INION now also offers the ability to search information in their bibliographic databases

Alternate names

ИНИОН (i.e., INION) stands for Институт Научной Информации по Общественным Наукам, i.e. The Institute of Scientific Information for Social Sciences.  Since this institute is a unit of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the database is listed as "Russian Academy of Sciences Bibliographies" in most Western libraries.

Obtaining copies of items

Digital copies of most articles in the INION database are available directly from INION.  Details are provided in Russian at the INION website.

International Coverage

INION contains hundreds of thousands of records for materials not only in Slavic, East European & Eurasian languages, but also international languages from nearly every country of the world, particularly English.  The Academy of Sciences Library conducts bibliographic exchanges with 874 enterprises from 69 nations from around the world and exchanges books with 723 partners from 112 different countries. It contains many special collections for Russia, particularly documents from international organizations including the League of Nations, the United Nations, UNESCO, as well as government documents from other countries, especially the United States and Great Britain. 

Unparalleled coverage for Russia & Eastern Europe

INION--Institute of Scientific Information for Social Sciences--(accessible via subscription or via the open web) is a very large and extremely useful database, especially for Russian-language materials. Containing over 3,500,000 records and more than 14 million items for articles, books, manuscripts and dissertations in the humanities and social sciences published since 1980, INION offers a breadth of bibliographic access to Slavic and East European journal articles that is not approached by any other single database.

Over 12,500 journals in 140 languages are indexed, primarily from Russia, the CIS, and Eastern Europe. In addition to individual journal articles, books, book chapters, articles from edited volumes/sborniki, manuscripts, and dissertations are also indexed.  Subjects covered include "humanities, religion, philosophy, Slavic studies, political science, social sciences, economics and art, and languages." EBSCO provides full access of INION to subscribers, available here for UIUC. 

Each interface (subscription vs. open web) has its advantages and disadvantages.  INION is actually comprised of a number of smaller bibliographies covering individual disciplines (such as literature, government and law, etc.)  The subscription interface through EBSCO databases allows the user to search all of these databases at once, while on INION's own website, the discipline-specific bibliographies must be searched separately.  For single discipline inquiries, this can be an advantage; for interdisciplinary ones, a disadvantage.  It is possible to search all disciplines simultaneously on INION's website, but only in three-year chunks (i.e., items published between 1996 and 1998, 1999 and 2001, etc.).  On the other hand, INION's own interface appears to provide less erratic search results and some useful search options not available through OCLC.  For several years, the material available through INION's own interface was also much more current than that available through OCLC, although this appears to have been corrected at the time of this writing. Additionally, INION offers thematic resources, and archived previous versions of the site

In many cases it is best to search INION using the Cyrillic script, as the following searches for "Ceauşescu" (18 results) vs. "Чаушеску" (75 results) demonstrate.  In other cases, the Latin-script version may be more successful (i.e., 543 results for "putin" as a keyword vs. 518 for "путин").  Until and unless these result lists are harmonized, it is probably best for scholars to perform their searches in both Cyrillic and Latin.  Transliteration, of course, can be an issue.  In the main, INION appears to be using the ISO system, which appears in a table here. After choosing a database, patrons can search INION holdings via a simple search (upper left) or by setting specific search parameters for a more targeted search (upper right). The search is powered by WebIbris and should look like the following image: 


As the following record from the search for "Чаушеску" shows, INION records include broad, clickable Russian-language descriptors, some of which are also translated into English. This record also happens to include a very brief abstract in Russian, which is common but by no means universal. If results seem less numerous than expected, it is important to make sure that you are searching within the appropriate INION database. Also, the search parameters need to be set properly, with the broadest search (Общий словарь) offering the broadest results. In the case of "Ceauşescu," a search for the Latin-script name will render results in mostly English and Romanian, while writing his name in Cyrillic will yield mostly Russian-language sources. 


Subject Guide

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Slavic Reference Service
Slavic Reference Service
International and Area Studies Library
Room 317
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
1408 West Gregory Drive
Urbana, Illinois 61801