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Boolean operators
Jennifer Faura avatar
Written by Jennifer Faura
Updated over a week ago

What are they?

Boolean operators are used to logically link keywords entered in a search to obtain the most relevant results. They take the form of mathematical or punctuation symbols and are inserted between keywords to combine them.

By default – i.e. without these logical operators, the keyword detection system only looks at occurrences that correspond to the exact word entered: thus, if you enter the word ‘climatology’, only the content with this specific word will appear but no occurrence of ‘climate’ or ‘climatologist’ will – keep in mind that plural/singular forms matter, too!

To be sure you do not miss anything, write your keywords using spelling variations or words belonging to the same lexical field.

How does it work?

You can use logical operators to refine your search of amendments in the list, or your keyword notifications:

Reducing the number of results:

  • climate + change: separate the two words using a ‘+’ to receive only the content in which both appear. This equals a strict ‘and**’**. For example, if in the summary of an amendment both terms appear, this amendment will be flagged whether there are other words in-between or not.

  • "climate change": use inverted commas to frame a string of words to receive only occurrences of these words in that precise order. This helps you look for a specific phrase.

A gentle reminder that looking for an exact phrase requires the use of English inverted commas ("…"), and doesn’t work with any other type of inverted commas.

Increasing the number of results:

  • climat* + chang*: the asterisk is used to cut a word to search all possible endings of said word. In this case, you could receive content in which the words ‘climates’ or ‘climatologist’ appear, associated with ‘changes’ or ‘changing’.

  • climate change: by separating two words of a same keyword or key phrase using a space, you will receive content in which one of them or both appear. This corresponds to ‘or’.

  • (climate + change) ("global warming"): brackets enable you to combine keywords. Here, for instance, you are looking for amendments or articles that contain the words ‘climate’ and change, or those that include the exact phrase “global warming”, or both as both sets of brackets are spaced out.

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