General Research Guides

Treaties and International Trade

This guide is designed to help you research treaties and international trade. The first section links to tutorials and research guides published by other libraries and institutions.  The second and third sections are designed to help you locate the texts, relevant information, and statistics for treaties and international trade.

Research Guides and Tutorials
International Trade

Research Guides and Tutorials

An Approach to Researching the Drafting History of International Agreements
An excellent tutorial from an expert law librarian.

Electronic Information System for International Law
A portal to international legal resources from the this international law association.

Encyclopedia of the United Nations and international agreements by Edmund Jan Osma̜cyzk ; edited by Anthony Mango
CC Reference JX1977 .O8213 2003 v.1-4

Foreign Affairs Online
A collection of resources helpful for researching international law.

An online international legal research portal published by the Hauser Global Law School program at NYU's School of Law.

The International Law of Treaties, Walter Gehr
A tutorial from an Austrian expert on international law.

International Legal Research Tutorial
Excellent tutorial and resource guide from Duke University School of Law and Berkeley School of Law.

International relations, international security, and comparative politics : a guide to reference and information sources by Chad M. Kahl.
CC Reference Z6461 .K34 2008

NAFTA Research
Resource guide from NYU Law Library.

Researching Treaty Sources, University of Minnesota Law School
A tutorial and resource guide for researching treaties.

Researching U.S. Treaties and Agreements
A tutorial and guide to sources from the association of law librarians.

WTO and GATT Research
Guide to resources with tutorial from NYU Law Library.

Understanding the World Trade Organization (WTO)
An organizational map.

United Nations (UN) Treaty Reference Guide
Detailed guide to understanding treaties from the UN.

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Strategy and top resources
Other places to look for treaties
Treaties to which the U.S. is not a party


For treaties prior to 1950, look in Bevans.  For treaties from 1950-present, refer to Treaties in Force.  If the treaty is not yet published, check the Treaties Affairs website.  For treaties to which the U.S. is not a party, refer to the suggestions below.

Top resources

Treaties in Force (TIF)
An official government publication which provides an index to treaties currently in force to which the U.S. is a party. 

Treaties and Other International Agreements (TIAS)
First official publication of text of treaties and agreements (slip form); lag time of about 8-9 years before publication.

U.S. Treaties and Other International Agreements (UST)
The official texts for U.S. treaties (following publication in TIAS).  Lag time of about 10-20 years.  At Carleton, these are published in Lexis Nexis Academic.

Treaties and Other Interational Agreements of the United States of America, 1776-1949 (Bevans)
CC Gov Docs S 9.12/2 v.1-13
The definitive publication of treaties to which the U.S. was a party from 1776-1949.  Volume 13 provides an index by subject and country.  Often called Bevans after its author, Charles Bevans.

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Other places to look for treaties

Status of treaties from the 90th Congress forward.

Senate Executive Reports
The report from the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on whether or not the treaty should be ratified.  Includes the treaty text.  Available at GPO Access (1995 forward) and indexed in LexisNexis Congressional (1970 forward).

Senate Treaty Documents
These are the text of treaties sent by the Senate to the President for ratification.  Access these through GPO Access (1995 forward) and at the Senate website (1975 forward).  LexisNexis Congressional indexes these from 1970 forward.

Treaty Affairs
Access treaties recently received by Congress and links to other official treaty sources.

Call the Office of the Legal Advisor, Department of State, Washington, DC 20520; phone (202) 647-1345

Avalon Project, Yale Law School
Collection of full-text treaties.

U.S. Department of State Bulletin
CC Gov Docs S 1.3:
Contains some full-text treaties and information about treaties. Scope: 1939-1989.

U.S. Department of State Dispatch
CC Gov Docs S 1.3/5:
Continues the Department of State Bulletin with updates on current treaty actions.  Scope 1990-1999. Continue at various online State Department sites including The Office of the Legal Adviser.

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Treaties to which the U.S. is not a party

ASEAN Treaties
A table and archive of ASEAN agreements treaties to the 1960s. 

Council of Europe
Treaties to 1947.

LexisNexis Academic Universe
Go to "Sources" and select "Treaties and International Agreements".  Particularly useful: "International Legal Materials".

European Union Treaties
Includes treaties establishing the EU plus essential documents.

Organization of American States
The depository for agreements between American states. Scope: 1947 forward.

United Nations Treaty Database
The UN and League of Nation Treaty Series, multilateral treaties deposited with the UN, monthly statements of treaties and international agreements, treaty reference, and more.

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International Trade

International in scope
U.S. and its trading partners

International in scope

O.A.S.'s Foreign Trade Information System:
The Organization of American State's Foreign Trade Information System.  Locate the full text of trade agreements in force for OAS states as well as other trade-related information.

UNCTAD Handbook of Trade Statistics
Trade data from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development presented in tables, reports, and charts.  Time series from 1988-2006.

From the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, this database enables you to search for trade control measures by product by country.

World Bank Data on Trade and Import Barriers
A comprehensive collection of data from the World Bank on trade barriers and related topics: trends in average applied tariff rates in developing and industrial countries, 1981-2006; FDI and its share of GDP, 2000-2006; and much more.

World Trade Organization's (WTO) Docs Online
The database for the WTO's official documentation, including agreements.

WTO International Trade and Tariff Statistics:
Locate trade and tariff statistics including: WTO's publication, Annual Trade Statistics (1998-present); comprehensive tariff data for all members; current trade statistics in database form; World Tariff Profiles.

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U.S. and its trading partners

Foreign Trade Statistics, US Census Bureau
From the U.S. Census Bureau. Includes statistics such as top trading partners (1998-present); trade in goods by country (1985-present); historical series such as U.S. International Trade in Goods, (annual, 1960-present); U.S. Imports of Crude Oil (monthly, 1973-present); and much more.

International Trade Update
A monthly newsletter published by the Office of Public Affairs of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration.

Office of U.S. Trade Representative:
Locate information on U.S. trade agreements in force.  Search for trade policy and agreements by country, region, or sector.

Trade Compliance Center, U.S. Department of Commerce:
Hosts a database of U.S. trade agreements: search by agremeent or view a list of all agreements by country.  Also view trade policy review reports by country.

U.S. Courts of International Trade
This court hears matters pertaining to the U.S. and trade.  Locate slip opinions from 1999-present.  Also locate rules and procedures.

U.S. Free Trade Agreements
Information on U.S. free trade agreements.

U.S. Harmonized Tariff Schedule
Information on the U.S. tariffs by country, by product.

U.S.D.A. Searchable Database of Trade Agreements:
Search and view agricultural trade agreements; also view general trade trends and data.

Trade States Express
National trade data and state export data, available through a data query tool: retrieve, visualize, analyze, and customize the data.

This Research Guide By:

  • Danya Leebaw