Staff of the Parliamentary Research Branch (PRB) of the Library of Parliament work exclusively for Parliament conducting research and providing analysis and policy advice to Members of the Senate and House of Commons and to parliamentary committees on a non-partisan and confidential basis.
The documents referred to on this page were originally prepared for general distribution to Canadian Parliamentarians to provide background and analysis of issues that may arise in the course of their Parliamentary duties. These studies are not official Parliamentary or Canadian government documents. No legal or other professional advice is offered by the authors or the Parliamentary Research Branch in presenting its publications or in maintaining links to other Internet sites.
Current Issue Reviews (CIR) are concise, descriptive commentaries on topical issues. Each paper is updated regularly and contains a discussion of the issue, a chronology of events, details of the action taken in Parliament and a select reading list. Information in CIRs is the latest available on the review date shown. CIR numbers indicate the year, followed by the number and language; e.g., 87-1E. Browse issues of Current Issue Review at publications.gc.ca
Backgrounders (BP) are lengthier, in-depth studies on subjects of interest. Browse issues of Background Paper at publications.gc.ca
Legislative Summaries (LS) provide information on most government bills, including the purpose and history of the legislation, an analysis of important clauses, and comments from interest groups, the media and other sources. They are numbered with the prefix LS, followed by the number and language; e.g., LS-21E. Browse issues of Legislative Summary at publications.gc.ca
Mini-Reviews (MR) are brief papers on newsworthy events or other informational matters such as court decisions, scientific advances or conference reports. They are numbered with the prefix MR, followed by the number and language; e.g., MR-9E. Browse issues of Mini Review at publications.gc.ca
Modular Documents are studies designed for the electronic mode and appear in various formats. Modular Documents are numbered with the prefix PRB followed by the number and language.
Snapshots of current issues. Browse issues of In Brief at publications.gc.ca
Longer studies composed of stand-alone sections ("modules") each of which provides a brief treatment of one aspect of a subject but also integrates with sections studying different aspects. Multi-disciplinary Modular Backgrounders will feature several authors, providing legal, economic, scientific, social science/policy perspectives on a major issue. Browse Modular Backgrounders at publications.gc.ca
The above information was adapted from the Library of Parliament pages from the Depository Services Program website before it was decommissioned and merged into the Government of Canada Publications website.