basic search help

Are you searching for something general in the architectural, planning or environmental disciplines with just one or two words in mind? Basic Search searches all the fields in the entire database for your search words or phrases. For best results type in specific or uncommon words, click Search and then scan through the results.

Note: When you find something in PADDI that seems relevant, click in the box to left of the document and you can then print it. Click on Getting Material for information on how you can get the full text version.

Some examples of different types of searches that you can do in PADDI:

  • To find references on a specific building(eg Blackwood Golf Centre), type Blackwood and click Search.
  • To find references on a particular subject, type in the most specific word(s) that relate(s) to your topic (eg groundwater, pollution, poverty, land use, crypts, stucco, planning permission) and click Search.
  • To find references on the work of specific architects type one surname to find all records with that name (eg typing in Tallon will give all records for Scott Tallon Walker but also all references to Tallon as sole architect). Note that in Basic Searchthis will produce all records in which this name appears (eg typing in Scott will produce all records containing Scott as author as well).
  • To find references containing an exact phrase, enclose the phrase in quotation marks (eg typing in "Northern Bank" will give all records in which Bank immediately succedes Northern) and click Search.
  • To exclude references containing a particular word, add a minus sign to the front of that word (eg typing in
    Waterfront Dublin -Belfast will produce results containing the terms waterfront and Dublin but not the term Belfast) and click Search.

Basic Search tips:

  • The database is case insensitive.
  • The database automatically truncates each search word so records containing all the possible endings of that word will be retrieved (eg typing in plaster will also give all records containing plasters, plasterer, plasterers, plastering, etc).
  • As truncation may sometimes retrieve irrelevant records, you can stop the database truncating a search word by enclosing it in quotation marks (eg "arch" will only search for arch not archaeology, arches, architect, architects, etc). Note that this search will fail if the word that is enclosed in quotation marks contains less than four letters.
  • If you are searching for a building with a Saint's name in it, always use the abbreviated form of Saint without a full stop (eg St Patrick's Cathedral).
  • If you are searching for a building name or location which contains the word Street, always type the word in full (eg Princes Street Market, North Street Arcade, Leeson Street).
  • If you find that you are getting no hits, no relevant hits or too many hits, you need to make your search more specific. Sometimes searching for single terms in PADDI produces a large number of results, owing to those terms being frequently used in many fields and records in the database (eg a search for environmental or planning retrieves hundreds of references).

To make your search more specific, you can restrict your search to one field, search two or more different fields at once, or limit your results by publication year or document type. Please go to the Advanced Search screen where you can use the full search power of the database. From this screen you can use the Thesaurus, or subject listing, to find accepted search terms. Advanced Search Help is also available.