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Get the most out of CORDIS search

CORDIS search interface is available at

The search interface allows you to:

Search with the filters menu

The filters menu available at the side of the search interface offers the most common filters for a general use.

Search for terms

You can also enter search terms in the search box available at the top of the search interface.

Searched terms will be searched separately, e.g. searching for sustainable agriculture will generate the query 'sustainable' AND 'agriculture'.

If you want to search for an exact phrase you have to use single quotes: 'sustainable agriculture'.

Double quotes are also valid as they will be normalized to single quotes by the system: "sustainable agriculture".

When searching for terms, wildcards can be useful to find different variations of a word.

A wildcard is a character that substitutes for another character or string of characters.

The wildcards that you can use are the asterisk (*) and the question mark (?):
* matches zero or more non-space characters
? matches exactly one non-space character

For example, searching for educat* will match any word starting with educat, such as educate, educated, education, educational or educator.

Searching for organi?ation matches organization or organisation.

Wildcards can sometimes give you a large number of irrelevant results. In this case, you may want to skip the wildcards and enter the different search terms in full.

Combine filters with search terms

You can combine search filters with search terms entered in the search box. Your search terms will act as another filter added to your query.

For example, searching for projects in the field of embryonic stem cell research, you launch a search based on the following filters:

Collection: Projects
Field of Science: stem cells

You can further filter your search results by entering the embryonic keyword in the search box.

Build your own search queries

Selecting 'Edit query' next to the search box will show the query generated for your search, in edit mode.

In this mode you can learn the data structure and the query syntax, and you can enter your own search queries based on a combination of the following elements:

  • Search terms
  • Logical operators
  • XPaths

Search terms

See above.

Logical operators

With logical operators you can combine your search terms, or exclude a specific search term.

There are three operators that you can use: AND, OR, NOT, plus the () parentheses that are used to group terms together.

AND allows you to narrow your search to only retrieve results that include all items in a list
chemical AND electrical AND mechanical

OR allows you to broaden your search to retrieve results that include one or more items in a list
science OR scientist OR scientific
Many people incorrectly think the OR operator is an either/or operator (exclusive or), when in fact it is an and/or operator (inclusive or).

NOT allows you to exclude terms you don't want to appear in your search results.
wood NOT plastic

If different operators are used in the same query, the search is processed according to this order of precedence: the NOT operator has the highest precedence, followed by the AND operator, followed by the OR operator.

() parentheses
You can always control (override) the operator precedence by enclosing your terms and their operators in parentheses. The information within parentheses is interpreted first, and then information outside the parentheses is interpreted next. Within each set of parentheses, operator precedence applies.

For example,
sustainable OR ecological AND farming finds all records in which both ecological and farming are present, as well as all records in which the word sustainable is present.

(sustainable OR ecological) AND farming finds all records in which the word farming is present together with either sustainable or ecological.

If there are nested parentheses (i.e. parentheses within parentheses), the search engine processes the most enclosed parenthetical expression first, then the next, and so on until the entire query has been interpreted. For example, ((rain OR shower) AND storm) OR rainstorm


XPaths are used for selecting nodes from an XML document. The queries that are generated when you search with the filters menu are based on XPaths.

For example, selecting the following filter values:

Collection: Results Packs, Results in Brief, News, interviews
Domain of Application: Climate Change and Environment
Language: English

will generate the query:
(/article/relations/categories/collection/code='pack','brief','news','interview') AND language='en' AND /article/relations/categories/applicationDomain/code='env'

From the path to a specific node in the XML of a record, you can deduce the corresponding XPath and use it in your own queries.

You can use specific XPaths that are not available in the search filters menu, e.g.

Searching for closed projects:

Searching for projects with a duration of 36 months:

Searching for projects having a partner organization:

Searching for projects having a participant organization with a "terminated" attribute:

Searching for projects having a third party and/or an international partner organization:
/project/relations/associations/thirdParty/organization/id='*' OR /project/relations/associations/internationalPartner/organization/id='*'

The XPaths used by the different filters in the search interface are provided in the section: Quick guides - XPaths used in search filters.

Quick guides

Logical operators

Operators Description Examples
AND AND combines search terms so that each search result contains all of the terms.

AND narrows your search.
cancer AND treatment returns results that contain both cancer and treatment.

cancer AND treatment AND therapy returns results that contain cancer, treatment, and therapy.
OR OR combines search terms so that each search result contains at least one of the terms.

OR broadens your search.
doctorate OR degree returns results that contain doctorate or/and degree.
NOT NOT excludes terms that you don't want to appear in your search results.

NOT narrows your search.
viruses NOT bacteria finds results that contain viruses but not bacteria.

viruses AND NOT (bacteria OR fungi OR parasites) finds results that include viruses, without any mention of bacteria, fungi, and/or parasites.


Quotes Description Examples
' ' Use single quotes to search for items that match all of the search terms in the order entered. 'circular economy' finds results that contain "circular economy".
" " Double quotes have the same effect than single quotes. They are converted to single quotes by the system. "circular economy" finds results that contain "circular economy".


Wildcards Description Examples
* Matches zero or more non-space characters educat* matches any word starting with educat, such as educate, educated, education, educational or educator

Hof*man* matches Hofman, Hofmann, Hoffman, or Hoffmann
? Matches exactly one non-space character organi?ation matches organization or organisation.

organi?ation* matches organisation, organisations, organisational, organization, organizations, or organizational


Parentheses Description Examples
( ) Clauses in parentheses are executed before the other operators (NOT, AND, OR) and can therefore be used to modify the default precedence of operators. In the query pollution OR environment AND water the AND operator is executed before the OR operator. Parentheses can be used to force the execution of the OR operator before the AND operator: (pollution OR environment) AND water

Parentheses can be nested up to two levels: water AND ((wheel OR mill) AND NOT 'generators and turbines')

The above query is equivalent to: water AND (wheel OR mill) AND NOT 'generators and turbines'

XPaths used in search filters

Filter XPath
Collection Projects


Research*eu magazines

Results in brief



Report summaries

Project deliverables

Project publications


Domain of application applicationDomain/code=[code]
Field of science /project/relations/categories/euroSciVoc/code=[code]
Programme programme/code=[code]
Topic ID /project/relations/associations/relatedTopic/programme/code==[code]
Language language=[lang]
Project acronym /project/acronym=[acronym]
Project ID /project/id=[id]
Call ID /project/relations/associations/relatedSubCall/call/identifier=[id]
Funding scheme /project/relations/categories/projectFundingSchemeCategory/code=[code]
Start date From: startDate>=[fromDate]

To: startDate<=[toDate]

From – To: startDate=[fromDate]-[toDate]
End date From: endDate>=[fromDate]

To: endDate<=[toDate]

From – To: endDate=[fromDate]-[toDate]
EU contribution From: /project/ecMaxContribution>=[fromValue]

To: /project/ecMaxContribution<=[toValue]

From – To: /project/ecMaxContribution=[fromValue]-[toValue]
Total cost From: /project/totalCost>=[fromValue]

To: /project/totalCost<=[toValue]

From – To: /project/totalCost=[fromValue]-[toValue]
Organisation country relatedRegion/region/euCode=[code]
Organisation name organization/legalName=[name] OR organization/shortName=[name]
Contact person person/firstNames=[firstName] AND person/lastName=[lastName]
Target audience /article/relations/categories/audience/code=[code]
Nature /article/relations/categories/nature/code=[code]
Source relations/categories/source/code==[code]
Last updated From: contentUpdateDate>=[fromDate]

To: contentUpdateDate<=[toDate]

From – To: contentUpdateDate=[fromDate]-[toDate]