Online resources

Subject databases and other online resources offered by the BFH libraries are accessible to BFH students and staff on the BFH network (WLAN «bfh», or VPN), and are available to other library visitors at the research stations in the library. E-books and e-journals (periodicals) are searchable via swisscovery.

In case of access problems, please consult our FAQ.

AATA online

AATA Online is a free research database containing abstracts of literature related to the preservation and conservation of material cultural heritage. It has been managed and published by the Getty since 1983. AATA Online contains over 148,000 records and adds approximately 4,000 new records each year through regular updates.


Business and economics (management, finance and banking, accounting, trade, etc.), engineering journals and journals from other fields as well, more than a third of which are available in fulltext. ABI/INFORM Global and Trade&Industry are included in the subscription. Provider: ProQuest.

ACM Digital Library

Information Technology: - ACM Digital Library: all their publications available in full-text (journals, conference reports, newsletters, special interest groups, except for the e-books) - The Guide to Computing Literature: references to other - non-ACM - literature including dissertations and technical reports.


Bibliography of the US National Agricultural Library. Provider: Ovid.


FAO bibliography of international agricultural literature.


Collection of pre-prints in agronomy and related fields, published by Cornell University, USA.


The institutional repository of the Bern University of Applied Sciences offers a complete overview of all publications of the BFH.


International architecture database with information on realised and planned projects. 

Art & Architecture Source

Database for visual and applied arts, design and architecture. Includes the databases Wilson Art Full-Text and Art Index Retrospective as well as 750 journals in full-text, references and abstracts from renowned international journals (USA, UK, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Holland), 220 e-books and 63'000 images. Provider: EBSCO.


BabelScores is a database for contemporary music of the last 40 years. Its aim is to make the most important contemporary composers known worldwide and their works accessible to the general public.

BDSL Bibliographie der deutschen Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaft

Bibliographic references from 1985 for German linguistics and literature.

BDSP Banque de données en santé publique

Archive (1993-2019) of the database of the French Ecole des hautes études en santé publique. Information service for people employed in the health and social work fields.

The database was integrated into the Loterre platform.

Berg Fashion Library

Articles and images on fashion from the beginnings until today. Contains images from the V&A Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the "Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion", ca. 150 e-books as well as a museum directory.

Bibliographic Database of the Conservation Information Network (BCIN)

BCIN, the Bibliographic Database of the Conservation Information Network, is the web's most complete bibliographic resource for the conservation, preservation and restoration of cultural property.

Business Source Premier

This database (business, marketing, management, finance, economics) contains bibliographic references plus more than 1'100 full-text journals as well market research, industry and country reports. Provider: EBSCO.

CAB Abstracts

Agriculture and forestry, chemistry, nutrition, food technology and science, medicinal plants and pharmacology, biotechnology, environmental sciences, tourism, etc. 14 simultaneous users. Provider: Ovid.


Preprint Server for publications in chemistry.

CINAHL Ultimate

Extensive resource for enquiry and research in nursing and related health professions: biomedicine, healthcare, complementary medicine, consumer health, etc. Contains over 2500 journals in full text. Provider: EBSCO

Classical Music Library

Recordings of famous composers, searchable by composer, era, title, instrumentation, etc.

Classical Scores Library (Vol. 1-5)

Contains the most important classical musical scores, manuscripts and previously unpublished material. Access also via Music Online.

Cochrane Kompakt

Selection of reviews on health and health care summarised in German.

Cochrane Library

Cochrane reviews contain combined results of the best medical research studies (evidence-based health care).

DACH Information

The multidisciplinary database DACH Information offers a wide range of high-quality full-text resources to support research in a broad spectrum of subject areas. 

Subject areas include: arts, business and economics, communication, education, law, history, humanities, linguistics, management, marketing, mathematics, nursing, psychology, social sciences and social work, STEM

Derwent Innovations Index

Contains patents from more than 50 patent offices. To improve searchability, the patent information is standardized and to each record a patent family and an industry code is attributed. The records are enriched with enhanced titles and abstracts.

Directory of Open Access Journals DOAJ

List of electronic journals that are freely accessible according to the principles of Open Access.


DORA is the digital repository and bibliography for all research articles and other publications affiliated with WSL, the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research.

EAI Electronic Arts Intermix

This collection of video and media art contains works of art from the beginnings in the 1960s until today. Access for FHNW, HSLU, BFH, ZHdK, HEAD Genève and ECAL.

EBSCO (interface)

Search interface for all licensed EBSCO databases: Art & Architecture Source, Business Source Premier, CINAHL Complete, GreenFile, LISTA, RILM, Teacher Reference Center.


Electronic bibliography of the American Economic Association (AEA): ecnomic theories, production, country studies, trade, social indicators, etc. Provider: ProQuest.

Edition Soziothek

Edition Soziothek is the central platform for knowledge transfer between Universities of Applied Sciences and social work practice. Professionals and students of social work get access to current literature on social work.


After PubMed, Embase is the most important biomedical literature database. In addition to the articles indexed by MEDLINE, it includes from European journals. The database can be searched using the Emtree thesaurus subject headings.


Bibliographical database for nursing and allied health. International content from 1995. Access for ZHAW, BFH, FH SG, SUPSI and HES-SO.


Free full-text access to digitised Swiss journals about science and culture (includes architecture and engineering).

ERIC (Ovid)

Documents on educational science of the Education Resources Information Center (US Department of Education). Provider: Ovid.

ERIC (ProQuest)

Documents on educational science of the Education Resources Information Center (US Department of Education). Provider: ProQuest.

Essential Science Indicators (ESI)

The Essential Science Indicators database reveals emerging science trends as well as influential individuals, institutions, papers, journals, and countries in your field of research. Data is based on a 10 year rolling file and covers 22 fields of research.

Fachportal Pädagogik

Literature database with full texts and references for pedagogy, social pedagogy and social work.


Abstracts from 300 film journals since 1972, brief information on 22'000 silent movies, a bibliography of the publications of the members of FIAF (International Federation of Film Archives) and an international directory of film and TV documentation collections. Provider: ProQuest.

FSTA Food Science & Technology

Database with references from more than 4'600 publications in the field of food science and technology as well as nutrition from 1969. Provider: Ovid.


High quality summaries of the latest business literature in areas such as management, strategy, sales & marketing, innovation, and economics and policy. Register for full access with the BFH email address.


GreenFILE contains information on the impact of humans on the environment. The following topics are covered: global climate change, green building, pollution, sustainable agriculture, renewable energy, recycling, etc. Provider: EBSCO.

IBA - pre-2008

The pre-2009 BHA (Bibliography of the History of Art) references are not included in IBA. They can be searched in this database.

IBA International Bibliography of Art

Applied art, architectural and art history, museum studies and conservation; bibliographic references from 2008. IBA is the successor of BHA (Bibliography of the History of Art). Provider: ProQuest.

IBSS International Bibliography of the Social Sciences

International Bibliography of the Social Sciences of the London School of Economics: Economics, Political Science, Sociology, Anthropology. Provider: ProQuest.

IEEE Xplore

The database provides full-text access to current literature in electrical engineering, electronics, information and communications technology and computer science published by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). In addition, there are VDE Conference Proceedings in English and the Bell Labs Technical Journal Archive.


Petrucci Music Library, a database with approx. 635'000 music files of almost 200'000 works and a good 73'000 music recordings.

Index suisse de l'environnement

This database lists several hundred of public and private Swiss institutions active in the environmental area.


HAL INRAE is an open access repository for depositing and consulting scientific publications of the French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food, and Environment.

JBI Joanna Briggs Institute Databases

Evidence-based Healthcare. Provider: Ovid.

Journal Citation Reports (JCR)

Provides information on academic journals, such as the impact factor, as a measure to assess the significance of a publication.


JSTOR is a digital library of academic journals, books, and primary sources. The BFH offers access to several JSTOR sources. For a systematic search, also consult BFH swisscovery.


Fundamentals for engineers (handbooks, reference works) and interactive tools for calculations (equations, tables, graphs, unit converter). The following modules are licensed:

  • Civil Engineering & Construction Materials
  • Composites
  • General Engineering & Project Administration
  • Manufacturing Engineering
  • Mechanics & Mechanical Engineering
  • Nondestructive Testing & Evaluation
  • Sustainable Energy & Development

Kunstforum International Online Archiv

Find more than 25,000 texts and 200,000 images in what is probably the most comprehensive documentation of contemporary art history from 1973 to the present day and search specifically for all topics and contents that move current art events. 
Single-user licence on site in the media library.


The legal database contains standard works from the Basler Kommentare series, short commentaries and selected handbooks. Journals published by Helbing & Lichtenhahn are also available.


"Library and Information Sciences Abstracts": more than 400 library and information sciences journals referenced from 1969. Provider: ProQuest.


"Library, Information Science & Technology Abstracts": Database for library and information sciences. References from more than 580 journals, books and conference reports from the mid-1960s. Provider: EBSCO.

LLBA Linguistics and Language Behavior Abstracts

Bibliographic references from 1973 to journal articles, book chapters and theses in linguistics: phonetics, phonology, semantics, morphology, syntax, etc. Provider: ProQuest.


Search portal for life sciences. with many German-language references is integrated in Livivo.


Historic and current information on materials as well as images. Includes collections of the Gewerbemuseum Winterthur, HSLU T&A and Design, the Sitterwerk, ZHdK, ETHZ, ZHAW and HKB Bern.

Medline (Ovid)

Database of the National Library of Medicine (USA): clinical medicine, anatomy and physiology, dentistry, pharmacology and pharmaceutics, psychiatry and psychology, healthcare. Provider: Ovid.

Medline (ProQuest)

Database of the National Library of Medicine (USA): clinical medicine, anatomy and physiology, dentistry, pharmacology and pharmaceutics, psychiatry and psychology, healthcare. Provider: ProQuest.

Medline (Web of Science)

Database of the National Library of Medicine (USA): clinical medicine, anatomy and physiology, dentistry, pharmacology and pharmaceutics, psychiatry and psychology, healthcare.

MGG Online - Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart

MGG is a comprehensive music encyclopedia.

Music Online

This collection of music sources includes music scores and audio databases.

  • Music scores: Classical Scores Library (Vol. 1-5)
  • Audio databases: American Song, Classical Music Library, Contemporary World Music, Popular Music, Jazz Music Library, Smithsonian Global Sound for Libraries
  • Reference works: African American Music Reference, Classical Music Reference Library, The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music


German portal for music.


OpenAlex ist a free global index of scholarly journals, citations, researchers, research institutions and the research ecosystem. Sources: Microsoft Academic Graph, Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), Crossref, PubMed, ORCID, ROR, Unpaywall, Internet Archive and different repositories worldwide. It can be used as an alternative to Web of Science.

Optica Publishing Group

Optics, photonics, imaging, sensing - includes everything from fundamental science, recent research to engineering applications, including materials, devices and systems. 

OSF (Open Science Framework) Preprints

Search simultaneously multiple subject repositories with preprints.

Ovid (search interface)

Search interface for all licensed Ovid databases: Agricola, CAB Abstracts, (FSTA), Medline, PsycInfo, Psyndex.

Oxford Companion to Music

This classic reference work includes articles that range from clear, concise definitions of musical ideas and terms to extended surveys of musical forms and styles, with specialist coverage of virtually every musical subject. It places music in its social and cultural context.

Oxford Dictionary of Music

The Oxford Dictionary of Music is the most up-to-date and accessible dictionary of musical terms available and an essential point of reference for music students, teachers, lecturers, professional musicians, as well as music enthusiasts.


Interdisciplinary full text database for articles from open access journals.


Database of the Centre for Evidence-Based Physiotherapy of the University of Sydney, Australia.

PEN - Practice-based Evidence in Nutrition

Evidence-based global resource for dietetic practice from Canada.

Primal health research databank

Explore correlations between the 'primal period' (fetal life, perinatal period and year following birth) and health and personality traits in later life.

ProQuest (search interface)

Search interface for all licensed ProQuest databases: ABI Inform, Dissertations & Theses, EconLit, ERIC, FIAF, IBA, IBSS, LISA, LLBA, Medline, NCJRS, PTSDpubs, Sociological Abstracts.

PsycInfo (APA Psychinfo)

Psychology and related fields of interest: psychiatry, medical care, sociology, economics. Provider: Ovid.

Psyndex (PSYNDEX Databases)

Tests: used in the fields of psychology and education in German-speaking countries. Lit & AV (Literature and Audiovisual Media database): bibliographical information on publications in psychology by authors in German-speaking countries. Provider: Ovid.


Freely accessible database published by the National Agricultural Library of the US Department of Agriculture. The focus of the database is on recent scientific publications (1995-) in the field of agriculture, mainly peer-reviewed articles. The search results contain the links to the full-text of the articles (DOI).


PubliSA collects German-language publications of all kinds that address social work and its social framework, its fields of work and its target groups. Bibliography, no full texts.


Contains the references of biomedical literature in Medline as well as life sciences journals and e-books. Free resource published by the US NIH (National Institutes of Health).

RILM Abstracts of Music Literature

Most extensive bibliography of musical literature worldwide with references from more than 2'000 music journals and 11'000 journals from other fields as well as conference reports from 1835 to the present. Provider: EBSCO.

RILM Music Encyclopedias

Constantly growing, curated full-text collection of 60 publications published from 1775 to the present. The content covers the various subject and thematic areas of historical musicology, ethnomusicology and theory, with a focus on popular music, opera, instruments, blues and gospel, as well as recordings and women composers.

RISM International Inventory of Musical Sources

Documentation of musical manuscripts since 1600, mostly 1600-1850.

RISM Schweiz

International Database of Music Manuscripts - Switzerland.

SAGE Business Cases

Collection of business case studies.


Public health database (politics and economics of health, work safety, prevention and promotion of health, hospital management, etc.) compiled by several Swiss health libraries.

Social Services Abstracts

Social Services Abstracts provides bibliographic coverage of current research focused on social work, human services, and related areas, including social welfare, social policy, and community development. Social Services Abstracts is a part of Sociological Abstracts.

Sociological Abstracts

Social sciences, sociology and social work. Bibliographic references from 1952 to the present. Also includes Social Services Abstracts.

Sport libraries in Switzerland

Search engine for sport libraries in Switzerland.


Landolt-Börnstein database with data and fonctions in physics, chemistry, engineering and material sciences. Contains documents and experimental data for 290'000 substances.
Options for searching by substance, structure, property or keyword.

Springer Reference

Reference works of the Springer publishing house

Swiss jazz biographies

The Swiss National Sound Archives offer more than 1'000 biographies of Swiss jazz musicians with links to audio files of their work.


The Swisslex legal database contains all decisions of the Swiss Federal Supreme Court, the other federal courts and most of the cantonal courts of last instance, as well as legal commentaries, monographs and specialist journals. 
Registration with the BFH e-mail address: Login top right - Not registered yet? - left column: Registration - students and university members


Worldwide directory of available journals, series, yearbooks and newspapers.

Information for forestry practice

Web of Science

Multidispiplinary database including:

  • Science Citation Index
  • Social Science Citation Index (with economics)
  • Arts & Humanities Citation Index (with architecture)
  • Emerging Sources Citation Index
  • Conference Proceedings Citation Index: - Science - Social Sciences & Humanities


The Lawyers' Portal provides access to a comprehensive legal bibliography, Jusletter, Richterzeitung and the Social Welfare Law Database. 
Registration with the BFH e-mail address: via "My Weblaw" at the top right - New customer - I study or work at a public university/university - University/university of applied sciences = Bern University of Applied Sciences.


References to articles in the German language on sociology, social work, business and economics, political science. The subscribed modules WISO Wirtschaftswissenschaften and Sozialwissenschaften contain 564 magazines and journals and approximately 5'770 e-books in full-text.

Dissertations & Theses (A&I)

References for more than 2.4 million dissertations and master's theses worldwide from 1861. Abstracts are available for dissertations from 1980 and for master's theses from 1988. Previews of the first 24 pages are available for some dissertations.





Statistics of the EU member countries; cooperation with the OECD and UN as well as with Central and Eastern European countries, the former Soviet Union and Mediterranean countries.


FORSbase is an online platform that enables you to access data and obtain information about social science studies in Switzerland. You can register your own research projects, as well as store and share your own data.

FSO: Interactive and visual tools of the Swiss Federal Statistical Office

Interactive and visual tools of the Federal Statistical Office FSO. These include infographics, statistical atlases and interactive data (Stat-Tab), which allows the compilation of statistics according to individual requirements.

FSO: Swiss statistical encyclopaedia

Statistical tables and reports on the Swiss population, society, state, economy and environment of the Federal Stastistical Office FSO.


OECD Statistics, Books & Periodicals, such as OECD Economic Outlook, OECD Economic Surveys, OECD Journal.


Swiss foreign trade statistics

Archive access to over 100 Swiss newspapers. Not (completely) included are Der Bund, Die Berner Zeitung, Neue Zürcher Zeitung and Tagesanzeiger.


Newspapers and magazines worldwide, including several Swiss publications, as well as company information and press photographs. Alerts are not possible.


Orbis contains comprehensive information on companies worldwide. Use it to research individual companies, search for companies by profile and analyse companies. Also contains market research reports from Marketline.

Regional Business News

Contient des publications commerciales régionales des États-Unis.


Swissdox is managed by SMD Schweizer Mediendatenbank. It is a media archive as well as a press database. Swissdox contains Swiss daily and weekly newspapers, magazines and journals, press agencies, online media as well as newspapers that are no longer published from 1780 until today.

Derwent Innovations Index

Contains patents from more than 50 patent offices. To improve searchability, the patent information is standardized and to each record a patent family and an industry code is attributed. The records are enriched with enhanced titles and abstracts.


Patents: Espacenet, the database of the European Patent Office, contains patent information (original documents including illustrations) from 72 countries and regions.



The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) is the recognised regional standards body in Europe for telecommunications, broadcasting and other electronic communications networks and services. It develops worldwide standards in these areas and supports European regulations and legislation by creating harmonised European standards.
The standards are available free of charge and can be downloaded as PDFs.

IEEE Xplore

IEEE standards are international technical standards for electrical engineering, electronics, information and communication technology and computer science.


Successor solution to the e-Norm database. In addition to references, it contains the full texts of all ISO standards as well as current Swiss standards:

  • Electrosuisse
  • INB Interdisciplinary standards section (SNV)
  • SIA

The full texts can be saved and printed as PDF. They may not be passed on to third parties. Log in with your SWITCH edu-ID.

SNV-Connect also offers the Standards compendium 2022 (read only).


Standards of the Swiss association of road and transportation experts.

Students can register free of charge (Mitgliedschaft für Einzelpersonen > Beitrittsgesuch). This gives them access to the complete digital body of VSS standards and publications.

Art & Architecture Source

Database for visual and applied arts, design and architecture. Includes the databases Wilson Art Full-Text and Art Index Retrospective as well as 750 journals in full-text, references and abstracts from renowned international journals (USA, UK, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Holland), 220 e-books and 63'000 images.


Collections of images from museums, private collectors, photographic agencies, photographers of architecture, etc. for use in research and teaching.

ETH E-Pics Image Archive

In the image archive of the ETH library more than 500'000 images are available for free download, 100'000 of these images are in the public domain and can be used without restrictions. The collection includes photos of Swiss history of science and technology, the archives of Swissair and the Fotostiftung Schweiz as well as the Baugeschichtliche Archiv of the city of Zurich.

Rijksmuseum Studio

More than 500'000 images of works in the museum's collection have been digitised in high resolution; 200'000 of these images are available in the Rijksmuseum Studio and can be freely adapted.

Statens Museum for Kunst (National Gallery of Denmark)

As part of the Google Art Project this museum has digitised in high resolution approximately 40'000 images of works of art in the public domain, which can be used and adapted by the public.

You can find BFH Library e-books by searching in swisscovery. If you want to find e-books from particular publishers, you can use the direct access links listed here:

Bauwelt Fundamente

content-select: Beltz, Campus, Frank&Timme, Haufe, hep, Junfermann, Klett-Cotta, Lambertus, oekom, Psychiatrie Verlag, Schattauer, Schäffer-Poeschel, Schüren, Eugen Ulmer, Walhalla, WBG, WTM

DOAB – Directory of Open Access Books

Hanser eLibrary


IGI Global Environmental, Agricultural, and Physical Sciences

Kohlhammer (Login via Shibboleth)

Pearson eLibrary

ProQuest eBook Central

O’Reilly for Higher education


Thieme eRef Handbücher

utb elibrary: u.a. transcript, utb

WISO eBooks


Bielefeld Academic Search Engine BASE - a search engine for openly accessible academic documents, operated by Bielefeld University Library.

Google Scholar

Google Scholar is a freely accessible web search engine owned by Google that indexes the full text or metadata of scholarly literature across an array of publishing formats and disciplines. A search in Google Scholar does not replace a systematic search in scientific databases.

swisscovery search platform

The collections of the BFH Library (books, periodicals, DVDs, etc.; except for the library of the Abegg Foundation) can be searched using the swisscovery search platform:

swisscovery is operated by the Swiss Library Service Platform (SLSP).