Information Services

Databases O

Databases beginning with the letter O.

Access information: Free access
Description: The OAPEN Library contains freely accessible academic books, mainly in the area of Humanities and Social Sciences.


Access information: Available on and off campus from LexisLibrary. Select the ‘Source’ tab and select title from the A-Z list. Also available on campus and via the VPN from Factiva. Cookies must be enabled on your browser. Click on Source and select title from A-Z list or search for title.
Description: Full text of articles published in The Observer newspaper published on Sunday. Content available on day of publication. Sister title, The Guardian is also available via LexisLibrary and Factiva. Some articles by freelancers, some features and some supplements may not be available.
Coverage: LexisLibrary : From 1993
  Factiva: From 4th Jan 1981. (Selected coverage from 4 January 1981 to 22 January 2000||Abstracts from 4 January 1981 to 31 October 1989).
Additional information:

Historic content from The Guardian and Observer (1791-2003) is availbale from ProQuest's Historical Newspapers. See the entry for The Guardian and Observer (1791-2003).

Databases G

  For more information on finding newspaper articles see the Library's guide:  Newspaper content


OECD iLibrary

Access information: Access on and off campus.

Subscribed resources available via the iLibrary include the OECD/IEA Energy iLibrary, OECD Observer and OECD Economic Surveys.

The iLibrary also provides access to a substantial amount of free content, including the OECD Factbook, OECD Working Papers, Key Tables, Multilingual Summaries and most 'At a Glance' publications.

Alternative source:

Not all content is subscribed to. An alternative source is the UK Data Service's UKDS.Stat service.

Access to full content available from the National Library of Scotland. Registration required. Please note your main address must be in Scotland


Office of Strategic Services State Department Intelligence and Research Reports

Access information: Access on-campus. The Library's subscription to this resource expires 31 July 2024.
Description: During World War II and the early years of the Cold War, the Office of Strategic Services and the State Department assigned leading scholars to write classified reports about Asia, Europe, the Soviet Union, Latin America and Africa. Over 3,500 reports — not contained in the State Department’s foreign relations series or the armed forces’ official histories — are an excellent source for studying the major areas of the world from 1941 to 1961. 
Coverage 1941-1961


Access Information: Open access
Description: The database provides transcriptions of Olive Schreiner’s more than 4800 extant letters located in archives across Europe, the US and South Africa, with detailed editorial notes and background information, thanks to the Olive Schreiner Letters Project ( The letters are fully searchable with free text or with the Boolean search method. Transcriptions include every insertion and deletion as well as the main text. Guides to the archival locations of all her letters are also available.



Access information: Access on or off campus.
Description: SPEOnePetro is a library of technical documents, conference proceedings and journal articles serving the oil and gas exploration and production industry.
Note: It is not necessary for users to register to use the service. However, registration provides additional features, eg saving search strategies and setting up email alerts of relevant new content.


Online Egyptological Bibliography

Access information:

Access on or off campus.

Description: The Online Egyptological Bibliography (OEB) holds the largest available collection of references in Egyptological literature. It includes the volumes of the Annual Egyptological Bibliography (AEB) for 1947 to 2001 with abstracts, combined with Bibliographie Altägypten (BA) for 1822 to 1946, the Aigyptos database with keywords, and many thousands of more recently added records. It provides coverage of Egyptological literature from 1822 to the present and is updated nearly every day. OEB is a living site: improvements and extensions to functionality and to coverage are being developed and will be announced as they are introduced.


Access information: Free access
Description: A dynamic, online version of the catalogue of human genes and genetic disorders created by Dr. Victor A. McKusick hosted by the National Center for Biotechnology Information. Gene descriptions have links to article records in PubMed, sequence records, maps, and related databases.


Access information: Free access
Description: Openly available licensed datasets from several cultural institutions, including the British Library. All collections provide digital scans or photos that can be freely used without any restrictions.


Access information: Access on and off campus.
Description: is a resource for finding open access graduate theses and dissertations published around the world.  Information about theses comes from over 1100 colleges, universities, and research institutions. OATD currently indexes 5,860,381 items.


Access information: Access on and off campus
Description: An open access publisher, primarily for humanities and social sciences but now expanding into other disciplines. Over 250 e-books available.

Library membership provides students/staff or alumni with the right to freely download any digital edition format of any title from their website. Library Membership also provides a 15% discount (to staff/student/alumni) on any printed edition of their titles, purchased from their website.


Access information: Freely available
Description: A collection of high quality media resources originally created for The University of Edinburgh's MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) and free short online courses. These media resources have been made available under Creative Commons licence for sharing, reuse and remixing.


Access information: Freely available
Description: A collection of free, openly licensed media snippets from the Online Course Production Team at the University of Edinburgh, for downloading, sharing, remixing and reuse.


OpenGrey - closed 2021

Access information:

Archived in OpenGrey on the DANS EASY Archive

Description: Bibliographical records for European grey literature of all disciplines. Included technical or research reports, doctoral dissertations, conference papers and official publications. Operated by INIST-CNRS (The Institut de l'information scientifique et technique or the Centre national de la recherche scientifique).



Access information: Available on and off campus
Description: The database provides access to 1,960 vernacular texts dated prior to 1375 (the year of Boccaccio’s death). The verse and prose works include early masters of Italian literature like Dante, Petrarch, and Boccaccio, as well as lesser-known and obscure texts by poets, merchants, and medieval chroniclers. The OVI database was created to aid in the compilation of an historical dictionary of the Italian language, the Tesoro della lingua italiana delle origini, (portions of which are now available online).


Access information: Access on or off campus
Description: More than 700,000 images from Optical Society of America's core journals
Copyright: Images can be exported and may be used for noncommercial purposes only. Read the Image Detail information or contact OSA.


Orbis - Very Large

Access Information:

Access on and off campus

Description: Orbis is an umbrella product that incorporates data held on Fame, Amadeus, Zephyr. Orbis contains comprehensive information on companies worldwide, with an emphasis on private company information. Use it to research individual companies, search for companies by profile, analyse companies. Orbis contains information on both listed and unlisted companies.
Coverage: The University subscription for Orbis is limited to information for companies in the category 'Very large company' that have operating revenue >= $130 million US, total assets >= $260 million US, employees >= 1000


Ordnance Survey Digimap

Access information: Access on and off campus. Users are required to register and agree the data licence. Follow instructions provided
Description: Ordnance Survey Digimap provide contemporary OS Map Data and Ordnance Survey Products. Maps can be viewed, annotated and printed and data can be downloaded for use in GIS or CAD software.



Access information: Access on and off campus.

Orlando - "Women's Writing in the British Isles from the Beginnings to the Present" is a dynamic resource for the study of English literature, women's writing, and cultural history in general.

It consists of factual, critical, and interpreted material, with biographical and writing career entries on over 1,000 writers, more than 850 of them British women. It also includes selected non-British or international women writers, and British and international men, as well as more than thirty thousand dated items representing events and processes in a wide range of contexts such as history, science, medicine, economics and law.


Access information: Free access, registration required
Description: OrthoMedia is a multimedia platform that hosts global orthopaedic conference material, training videos and podcasts, with surgical technique videos soon to be added.  OrthoMedia is intended to provide surgeons with the opportunity to watch talks from conferences and discover content their peers are creating online.


Access information: Free access, registration required
Description: OrthoSearch is a searchable database covering a wide range of orthopaedic content from specialty specific journals, general medicine, standards and guidelines, preprints, videos and podcasts in one place. The search tools use algorithms intended to retrieve the most relevant results.  



Access information: Osiris was discontinued by BVD/Moodys Analytics 1 December 2022, Osiris content is available from Orbis - Very Large  
Description: Provides financial information on 55,000 listed and major unlisted/delisted companies worldwide (43,000 are non-US companies). The information includes: standardised and "as reported" financials (including restated reports), SEC filings, detailed earnings estimates including recommendations, ownership, stock data, news and ratings.



Access information:

Access on and off-campus.


A health education platform of 1,800 animated videos and 22,000 integrated practice questions, covering subjects including basic science, physiology, medicine and more. 

Access note

The University of Edinburgh Student link:

The University of Edinburgh Faculty link:


Access information: Access on and off campus. The Library's subscription to this resource expires 31 July 2024.
Description: Originally established as The Bytown Packet in 1845, it was officially renamed the Ottawa Citizen in 1851 – four years before the city itself adopted the name of the region’s magnificent river. The editorial view of the Ottawa Citizen has varied with its changing owners, down the left-right political spectrum, providing a different viewpoint throughout Ottawa’s history. Located in Canada’s capital, it has provided its citizens with useful knowledge throughout Canadian History about what happened at city hall or the House of Commons, accident scenes and storm disasters, the entertainment industry and Ottawa’s Rideau Canal. Known for collecting many journalistic awards over the decades, including 40+ national newspaper awards and two Michener Awards, the Ottawa Citizen has Canada’s highest prize in public service journalism.
Coverage: 1845-2010



Access information:

Access on and off campus - see registration guidance in Notes below.


Use your University of Edinburgh email address to create a personal account via The Library's institutional subscription:

Future access can then be direct from


A large searchable index of policy documents, guidelines, think tank publications and working papers from sources that are typically difficult to find in one place. Documents are parsed to find references, people and key concepts in relevant news stories, academic research, think tank output and other policy literature.  Full-text indexing can lead to discovery of additional citations.


Over 11 million full-text policy documents and grey literature from 32,000 organisations in 188 countries


Oxford Art Online

Access information: Access on and off campus.
Description: Oxford Art Online gives access to an expanding range of Oxford University Press art reference works: Grove Art Online, the Benezit Dictionary of Artists, the Encyclopedia of Aesthetics, The Oxford Companion to Western Art, and The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Art Terms, all of which can be cross-searched or individually searched. Oxford Art Online can also be used as an image search tool.
Coverage: Prehistory to the present day.


Access information: Available on and off campus

Developed cooperatively with scholars worldwide, Oxford Bibliographies offers exclusive, authoritative research guides. Combining the best features of an annotated bibliography and a high-level encyclopedia, this cutting-edge resource guides researchers to the best available scholarship across a wide variety of subjects.

Each subject area has an Editor in Chief, Editorial Board, and team of peer reviewers overseeing the development and updating of articles ensuring balanced perspective with scholarly accuracy and a robust updating program to keep researchers informed of advances in their field.

At the time of launch, each subject area includes approximately 50 articles; with an additional 50 to 75 articles added each year. New article topics are selected to ensure each subject area offers full and balanced coverage as determined by the Editor in Chief and Editorial Board, scholarly feedback, and research demand.

Coverage: The following modules are available to the University of Edinburgh - African American Studies, African Studies, American Literature, Anthropology, Biblical Studies, British and Irish Literature, Buddhism, Chinese Studies, Cinema & Media Studies, Classics, Criminology, Education, Hindu Studies, International Law, International Relations, Islamic Studies, Jewish Studies, Latin American, Linguistics, Literary and Critical Theory, Medieval Studies,  Music, Philosophy, Psychology, Renaissance & Reformation, Social Work, Sociology, Victorian Literature.  See for individual module title lists.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

Access information: Access on and off campus.
Description: Biographies of over 60,000 people who shaped the history of the British Isles and beyond, from the earliest times to the year 2013.  This resource is updated in January, May and September.


Oxford English Dictionary Online

Access information: Access on and off campus.
Description: Fully searchable online version of the Oxford English Dictionary the accepted authority on the evolution of the English language. Includes etymologies, quotations and pronunciation guides.


Access information: Access on and off-campus
Description: OHO brings together the world’s leading scholars to discuss research and the latest thinking on a range of major topics. Each Handbook offers thorough introductions to topics and a critical survey of the current state of scholarship in a particular field of study, creating an original conception of the field and setting the agenda for new research. The articles review the key issues and major debates, and provide an original argument for how those debates might evolve.

The following subject collections are available to the University of Edinburgh - Archaeology, Business & Management, Classical Studies, Criminology & Criminal Justice, Economics & Finance (up to 2020), History, Law, Linguistics, Literature, Music, Philosophy, Politics, Psychology, Religion and Sociology up to the end of 2021 copyright year.  If the chapters in these books have 2022 onwards updates, these will not be accessible. 


Oxford Islamic Studies Online

Access: Oxford Islamic Studies Online product site has been retired. 13/07/2022
Description: Oxford Islamic Studies Online features reference content and commentary by renowned scholars in the field and covers areas such as global Islamic history, the faith and concepts of Islam, the people, tenets and practices, politics, culture, and more.
  It includes 3,000 A-Z reference entries, chapters from scholarly and introductory works, Qur'anic study materials (with two widely respected English interpretations of the Qur'an and the Concordance of the Qur'an), primary source documents with editorial introductions, timelines for milestone events affecting the Islamic world, links to Internet resources, as well as photographs and maps.


Oxford Language Dictionaries

Access information: Access on and off campus.



Coverage: The following dictionaries are available: Arabic/English, English/Arabic, Chinese/English, English/Chinese, French/English, English/French; German/English, English/German; Portuguese/English, English/Portuguese; Spanish/English, English/Spanish; Italian/English, English/Italian, Russian/English, English/Russian.


Oxford Music Online

Access information: Access on and off campus.
Description: Provides access the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz and The New Grove Dictionary of Opera as well as The Oxford Companion to Music and the Encyclopedia of Popular Music.
  Entries include biographies, bibliographies and lists of works.


Oxford Reference Online

Access information: Access on and off campus.
Description: The Oxford Reference Online Collection is a vast collection of dictionaries and reference books offering over 1.8 million facts and definitions, many of them illustrated. Updated monthly with new titles, editions, factual corrections, features and functionality, the content ranges from concise definitions to in-depth articles on topics from Art to Zoology.  A title list can be found here


Access Information: Access on and off campus
Description: Oxford Reports on International Law brings together decisions on public international law from international law courts, domestic courts, and ad hoc tribunals. In this resource, the full scope of international case law is available in one place, accompanied by expert analysis and cross-case navigation via the Oxford Law Citator. New cases are added daily, making Oxford Reports on International Law the most up-to-date source of international case law available.


Access Information: Access on and off campus
Description: OSE provides full-text access to several hundred authoritative Oxford editions of major English works from the humanities written between 1485 and 1830. The subject coverage ranges from philosophy, literature, and theology, to economics, linguistics, and medicine, with a particularly rich collection in poetry, prose and drama including all of Shakespeare’s plays, the complete works of Jane Austen, the poetry of John Donne, and works by Adam Smith, David Hume and Jeremy Bentham.
Note: We do not have access to all OSE content, individual e-book records have been added to DiscoverEd. If you use the link above, please select the 'Only view full text results provided by University of Edinburgh' checkbox. This option is located in the left hand menu of the search results or browse results page.


Access information: Access on and off campus
Description: Complete text of scholarly books published by Oxford University Press in the subject areas below.
Coverage: Archaeology, Biology, Business & Management, Chemistry, Classical Studies, Clinical Medicine and Allied Health, Computer and Information Science, Earth Sciences and Geography, Economics and Finance, Education, Environmental Science, History, Law, Linguistics, Literature, Mathematics, Music, Neuroscience, Palliative Care, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Public Health and Epidemiology, Religion, Social Work and Sociology. We have access to over 20,700 e-books.