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eHRAF World Cultures & Archaeology

Info for Librarians at HRAF Member Institutions
Getting the eHRAF Databases Ready for the Academic Year

Dear Librarians,

Greetings from New Haven, Connecticut!
With fall semester just around the corner, I am sure that you and your colleagues are getting busy to welcome new students and provide help to faculty and researchers.  I hope that our eHRAF databases will be among those resources recommended by your library to those with research and teaching interests in cultural differences/universals, and societal diversity. As you may know, both of our uniquely structured cross-cultural databases, eHRAF World Cultures and eHRAF Archaeology, were winners in 2015 of the Academic Title Award and also made it into Choice's "top 10" internet resources list.  My colleagues and I continue to be very proud of this achievement, especially since Human Relations Area Files (HRAF) is among only a few remaining small non-profit membership organizations with its staff in it for the passion!
eHRAF's unique structure finds its roots in 1949 when HRAF was founded as an academic membership organization to facilitate cross-cultural research.  Then called the "HRAF Files", the collections consisted of ethnographic documents for a particular culture with the texts subject-indexed at the paragraph-level.  To this day, it's the OWC (culture) and OCM (subject) thesauri that provide the framework for eHRAF World Cultures and eHRAF Archaeology. Through clever programming, this enables users to search across cultures, regions, and even subsistence types!

Keeping eHRAF's unique framework in mind, I highly recommend that subject, reference, or instruction librarians, or anyone else who provides user support, (re)-familiarize him/herself with eHRAF World Cultures ( and/or eHRAF Archaeology (
In the weeks prior to the start of the academic year, it is a good time to check how the eHRAF database(s) are listed at your library.  Feel free to use the description text for eHRAF World Cultures and/or eHRAF Archaeology at  If your library listings include direct links to the HRAF homepage, then double-check those URLs as they may have been changed or redirected recently. 
If not for the purpose of double-checking the URLs and your library listings of eHRAF, you and your colleagues may just want to take a quick look at the HRAF homepage to see the various research/teaching resources that can be used with the eHRAF World Cultures and/or eHRAF Archaeology databases.  In addition to last year's complete revision of the eHRAF's user guide (in html and PDF format), the Help & Support section of HRAF's homepage ( now also includes a new suite of  video tutorials for both of our eHRAF databases. 
Useful links for the eHRAF databases at HRAF's homepage
Screenshot of HRAF's homepage with support & resource links for the eHRAF databases

That's it for now. My next email will be about training support services we provide, including recorded vid eo tutorials and weekly scheduled live(ly) 60-minute eHRAF webinars for librarians, faculty, students and researchers.  So please stay tuned.

All the best,

Christiane Cunnar 
Member Services
Human Relations Area Files (HRAF) at Yale University
755 Prospect Street
New Haven, CT 06511

Phone: 1-800-520-HRAF or  203-764-9401
eHRAF World Cultures & Archaeology ---voted as two of the "Top 10 Internet Resources" by  CHOICE REVIEWS ONLINE 
for 2015

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