Databases for Architecture

  • Additional Library resources available during the COVID-19 pandemic

    In addition to the e-content provided through the Library web site, many academic publishers are making additional e-resources available. Check this list  Library resources during COVID-19 pandemic for details. The list is being updated as more resources become available, so do check back regularly.

  • Below is a list of electronic sources some of which are indexes providing abstracts (summaries), and others databases which allow you to access the full text. For more information on these types of services see Using abstracts/indexes and databases.The Library also provides direct access to many full text electronic journals.

    Note: Some of the databases require confidential passwords, which may be accessed via the secure Library Electronic Resources pages.

    The following sources have been selected for their relevance to all areas of architecture. In order to obtain the full journal article, where the database does not give the whole text, check using LibrarySearch (Title search) and the list of full-text electronic journals; if not available then use the Interlibrary Loans Service.

    You may be interested in using other databases relating to other subjects in the built environment - such as construction, development Studies, planning, real estate and urban design. Please go to subject help and select the relevant subject from the list.

    The full list of databases the library subscribes to can be found on the databases A-Z list.


    • Academic Search Complete - a scholarly multi-disciplinary database with access to more than 8,500 full text journals, including about 7,300 peer-reviewed titles. Includes abstracts to a further 4,000 journals, plus some books, reports and conference proceedings : includes full text journal articles for business, construction, law and real estate management.
      Art full text - General art, design and architecture index which includes the full text of journal articles. Useful for researching interior design.
      ARTstor (images) - this is an image database with more than a million images covering a range of art related subjects which include Architecture. It is especially useful for obtaining images of buildings. Some of the images of buildings may include information about the building, such as the architect responsible for it's design and other design features. The images may be printed off or downloaded and saved to disk.
    • Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals - Covers all aspects of architecture. This is the biggest index of architecture articles in the world and is a US publication, so subject terminology and spelling may be different to British practice.
    • British Architectural Library Catalogue - Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA). Access to the RIBA Library in London is free and open to everyone. The online catalogue includes records to journal articles within the collection. You can also search for photographs, and the drawings and archives held at the V & A museum. The RIBA Library is particularly useful for researching information on architects, individual buildings, and images. To view the online image database go to RIBApix.
    • British Standards Online - This includes access to the full text of all current British Standards.
    • Building Cost and Information Service (BCIS) provides online building and construction cost and price data. It is a collaborative venture for the exchange of information so that subscribers involved in architectural design, construction and property can have ready access to the best available data.
    • Business Source Complete - This database includes full text journal articles in all disciplines of business including, construction, property and real estate management. Also company profiles, industry reports, market research and some books.
    • Construction Information Service - Provides full text architectural, legal and technical documents: which includes: BRE, CIBSE, CIRIA and JCT technical reports and papers, architects working details, journal articles from the Architects' Journal, seminal books in the built environment subject area, the Building regulations and specification material. also provides free access to the Architects Journal.
    • Detail Inspiration - Full text database of projects from Detail magazine in English (1987-). Each project has been individually indexed and the records provide a brief description, reference images, PDF and link to the relevant company website. The smart indexing enables you to search for projects by keyword and/or browse by : building type, construction, material, topic, issue no., location, build year.
    • Digimap Provides online access to UK ordnance survey maps.
    • Emerald Insight - Specialist publisher in peer-reviewed management research across all disciplines. This database contains full text journal articles on construction and property management, supply chain management, real estate and property, facilities, marketing, economics, logistics and strategy.
    • Factiva - International news database providing an archive of 32,000 sources from nearly every country worldwide, in 28 languages. Leading national newspapers, local newspapers, trade and professional journals, the BBC Monitoring Service (transcripts of world radio broadcasts) and company's financial details are all included. Contains information on real estate and international real estate. It also contains a large collection of full text journals relevant to architecture, construction and real estate management.
    • LexisLibrary - provides access to full text to national and regional newspapers.
    • PADDI - This database is an index of journal articles and papers on Irish architecture.
    • RIBApix - a growing number of photographs and images from the collections of the British Architectural Library at RIBA have been digitised. All images on this site are copyright of the RIBA, but low resolution copies may be downloaded free of charge for personal use.
    • Science Direct - articles and books from the publisher Elsevier covering civil and structural engineering, construction technology, management, renewable energy, sustainability and the environment. Particularly useful for researching the technologies used in energy efficient and sustainable buildings. Register to personalise your settings, save searches and create alerts.
    • Web of Science - Abstract/Citation index database with links to full text. Covers all subject areas, and includes proceedings of international conferences and symposia. Useful for engineering and construction technology topics.
    • Zetoc - This is a database formed from British Library's Electronic Table of Contents. It covers about 29,000 current journals and conference proceedings in science, technology, medicine, engineering, business, law, finance and the humanities. It covers material published since 1993 and is updated daily.