Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Research Guides | Library | Amherst College

BLST/HIST 355: Race and Educational Opportunity

Education Policy Research Centers

Working Papers

Researchers share working papers when they want to share their findings with others ahead or outside of the journal publication process. Authors may revise and re-upload papers based on peer feedback, but these papers have not gone through a systematic process of peer review.

Tip: you can search a phrase like "working paper" in Google to find working papers on specific topics. This works for reports, too.

Evaluating sources from organizations

Reports and other content published by research centers and policy organizations fall into the category of grey literature.

Grey literature is material published by organizations whose main function is not publishing (e.g., academic journals or book publishers). It may not go through a peer review process, Examples of grey literature include think tank reports, policy briefs, working papers, and conference proceedings.

Evaluation tips:

  • Check the "About Us" section of the organization's website to check for authors' institutional affiliations, political interests, and the mission of the organization. This can help you recognize bias in the research.
  • Check reports for citations and evidence, as you would a journal article or book.
  • Check what else the organization has published, for context.
  • For additional guidance, read "Writing about think tanks and using their research: A cautionary tip sheet" from The Journalist's Resource.