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Systematic Reviews for the Health Sciences: Grey Literature

What is Grey Literature?

The Fourth International Conference on Grey Literature (GL '99) in Washington, DC, in October 1999 defined grey literature as follows: "That which is produced on all levels of government, academics, business and industry in print and electronic formats, but which is not controlled by commercial publishers." - New York Academy of Medicine

Some examples:
Conference Proceedings
Government Documents
White Papers

Why Grey Literature?

From The Institute of Medicine:

Take action to address potentially biased reporting of research results.
Search grey literature databases, clinical trial registries, and other sources of unpublished information about studies

Grey Lit Sources:

  • Institutional Repositories
  • Clinical Trial Registries
  • Drug Registries
  • Organizational Websites
  • Government (federal, state, and local)
  • International Organizations


Additional Grey Literature Resources

Additional Databases

Additional databases that may be available through an institution

  • Healthcare Management Information Consortium (HMIC) 
  • ProQuest Dissertations & Theses A&I (UIC)
  • PsycEXTRA

Search Engines/Portals

Other Library Guides on Gray Literature