Thursday, March 25, 2010

New Database: Boston Business Journal / Bizjournals Online

Sawyer Library users have always had many options when it comes to searching through business news sources. We have the Wall Street Journal as a current database (as well as a deep--back to 1889!--archive). Business and industry news sources are available through general databases like Business & Company Resource Center, and the massive LexisNexis Academic has a specific search page just for "Business & Industry News." These are all good options for the national and international scene.

As for regional business news, our excellent Business Source Complete has a specific adjunct database called Regional Business News (RBN) that claims to provide an added component of "comprehensive full text coverage for...more than 80 regional business publications covering all metropolitan and rural areas within the United States." BUT, sadly, the regional business news of New England and Massachusetts has never been the strong suit of this database, despite its claims. RBN does include New Hampshire Business Review, the Rutland (VT) Business Journal and Valley Business Journal (also of Vermont), and a few New York State publications like Hudson Valley Business Journal, but it does not have the key business paper of eastern Massachusetts, the Boston Business Journal (BBJ), which we have always subscribed to as a current-reading paper and for which we have microform backfiles (with gaps) back to 1981.

Since newsprint falls apart and no one wants to deal with microform (even when someone bothers to produce it!), we have always wanted a reliable online source for the BBJ that would provide access wherever our library users have an internet connection. And now we have it. Sometimes called "bizjournals" or BBJ, we list in on our database list as Boston Business Journal/Bizjournals Online. This online file will likely be a valuable resource for both researchers and job-seekers here in Massachusetts and also for those interested in other business markets throughout the country.

Our opening screen for the database offers towards the upper left, the "featured local publication" of the BBJ. Click on the title link to the Boston Business Journal, and you will be offered the latest issues as either a PDF or a digital newspaper. Note, too, that the latest issue of the Book of Lists will be available here. These rankings of local companies and nonprofits can be handy in many situations. For example, here's the very top of a page on accounting firms:

Besides coverage of the current BBJ and Book of Lists in digital (sometimes a bit slow to load and navigate, according to your machine specs) editions, there is also a news archive in quick-to-load HTML available back to 1996. If you are looking for articles on a local company, this is probably your best option. Look for the "Search Archive" box to the right of the opening screen.

And if you are not interested in Massachusetts, but instead are interested in other US markets, the Boston Business Journal/Bizjournals Online also includes similar digital editions and archives for the other forty or so papers published by American City Business Journals. A few other "regional" business papers like Albany and Buffalo, New York are available here. The others are as wide-ranging as South Florida, Phoenix, Puget Sound and Honolulu.

The Boston Business Journal/Bizjournals Online should fill a real gap in local business research. We hope you find it useful. And if you need to expand your research of Massachusetts business topics, you might want to run your topic through Massachusetts Newsstand, as well. This database covers most of the general newspapers of the state, including the Boston Globe and Herald.

[FIND Boston Business Journal/Bizjournals Online on the "Databases by Subject" List for Business & Management, on the first column, right above Massachusetts Newsstand. ]

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