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Urban Energy Futures: Semester in Dialogue Library resources

Belzberg Library welcomes students in the Semester in Dialogue to SFU Vancouver. This guide will help you to use our library to find and evaluate research material for your projects. If you have any further questions about library services, please Ask a Librarian!

Research sources

Library research involves selecting your topic, identifying the best sources and appropriate research tools, accessing the items found, and evaluating your results. Start your research here is a brief guide that will help you with this process.

Visit the SFU Library home page to find resources, research tools, guides, and research help in one place. 

Books, articles and web sites on your course reading list or course outline can also provide a good starting point, particularly if the items include bibliographies, references or links to related material.

Books and journal articles

Search the SFU Library Catalogue to find books, journal articles, reports, and conference proceedings. If the item is not available at Belzberg Library or is out on loan, you can request it.

Searching by KEYWORD is the best way to start. Here are some sample KEYWORDS related to urban energy futures:

  • Climatic Changes
  • Community Development
  • Energy Conservation
  • Energy Consumption Forecasting
  • Energy Industries
  • Energy Policy
  • Global Environmental Change
  • Indigenous Peoples Land Tenure
  • Renewable Energy Sources
  • Renewable Resource Integration
  • Transportation Environmental Aspects

Once you have found good results with your keyword searches, use the subjects on those items to focus your search.

Search tips

  • Use syntax: AND to narrow, OR to broaden, NOT to exclude search (in capital letters)
  • Use truncation (*) at the end of root words, to find all variations
    e.g. Canad* will search Canada and Canadian
  • Use quotation marks to search for phrases or keep word order
    e.g. "Site C Dam" will retrieve resources that refer to this exact phrase, rather than resources that happen to contain these separate words

For a step-by-step guide to searching, see the SFU Library Catalogue Search Guide.

Journal article databases

Connect to Databases to find articles in academic journals, trade magazines, reports and newspapers, as well as financial and statistical data. Many databases provide online access to the full text of the articles or allow you to directly request copies of articles.

Suggested article databases for urban energy futures

Alternative Press Index
Alternative and radical media.

Applied Science and Technology Index
Technical, professional and trade publications including energy resources and research.

Business Source Complete
Business and economic aspects of energy-related topics.

Canadian Research Index
Canadian government publications.

CBCA Complete (Canadian Business and Current Affairs)
Covers news, business, and academic sources with a Canadian focus, including resource & environmental management.

Environment Complete
Environmental aspects of subjects including energy, renewable energy sources and natural resources.

Geobase
Key human and physical geography database with interdisciplinary coverage for researching environmental and development issues.

Web of Science 
Multidisciplinary source that indexes thousands of social science and humanities journals in addition to science journals. It also includes cited reference searches.

Statistics and government sources 

BC Environment Climate Change
Data, policy and legislation related to climate change

BC Ministry of Energy, Mines and Natural Gas
Includes the Site C electricity project

BP Statistical Review of World Energy
Data about world energy, markets and trends.

International Energy Agency
Provides some free summary information and news related to energy in member countries.

National Energy Board
Statistics, energy reports and energy outlooks for Canada.

Natural Resources Canada
Ministry responsible for Canadian energy policy and information.

Statistics Canada
Browse by subject for statistics and publications on energyenvironmenttransportation, and much more. 

US Energy Information Administration
Includes statistics, analysis, forecasts and country energy profiles from the US Department of Energy.

Vancouver's Greenest City 2020 Initiative
Addressing Vancouver's environmental challenges. Includes Neighbourhood Energy Strategy.

World Development Indicators
Over 600 development indicators including economic, social, environmental, business, and technology for more than 208 countries.

World Energy Outlook
International Energy Agency's annual global energy projections available online through OECD iLibrary.

Selected internet sources

Governments, research institutes, non-profit organizations, industry and other associations and companies all have web sites - many with publications freely available. Use Google or Google Scholar  to find additional information, including the web sites of interest groups and other organizations. Check the library's Internet Research guide for additional help in finding and evaluating web sites.

Useful sites for urban energy futures

Adaptation to Climate Change Team (ACT)
SFU-based think tank that brings leading experts together with industry, community, and government decision-makers to explore the risks posed by climate change issues and identify opportunities for sustainable adaptation.

BC First Nations Energy and Mining Council  
Supports First Nations' efforts to manage and develop energy resources.

BC Sustainable Energy Association
Non-profit advocating sustainable use and production of energy in BC.

Community Energy Association
Advises local governments on climate and energy.

EnviroLink Network
Non-profit organization with links to thousands of online environmental resources.

Global Development Research Center (GDRC)
A virtual organization that carries out initiatives in education and research in the areas of environmental sustainability, urbanization and community development. Includes publications and links on Urban Energy Management.

International Institute for Sustainable Development
Canadian-based policy research institute conducting research on sustainability issues, including energy.

NASA Global Climate Change
Information about the effects of climate change

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) 
Science, technology and engineering research information from the US Department of Energy.

Pembina Institute
Canadian think tank with focus on sustainable energy.

World Resources Institute
US-based environmental think tank with projects and publications in several themes, including ClimateEnergy and Sustainable Cities.

Subject Research guides are produced by SFU liaison librarians to point you to the best external sources as well as providing information about publications available in the library. Try these guides for further suggestions:

Writing and citing

Student Learning Commons
Help with academic writing, learning, and study strategies.

Writing and Style Guides
How to cite your sources properly.

Plagiarism
What plagiarism is and how to avoid it. 

Citation or reference management tools
Collect journal articles, books, or other document citations together in one place, and help create properly formatted bibliographies in almost any style — in seconds. Citation management tools help keep track of your sources while you work and store your references for future use and reuse.

Ask us!

If you would like any further assistance or information about the library or your research, don't hesitate to Ask a Librarian in person, by phone, email or interactive reference.