World News Digest

About This Product

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Presenting more than eight decades of authoritative news summaries and background articles, World News Digest contains a wealth of material and a dynamic interface that makes it easy to explore the events that shape our world. World News Digest frames events for research and is the place to start any reference project—take a look today.

For 80 years, World News Digest has been a go-to resource for context and background on key issues and events in the news. Hundreds of news sources, governments, and organizations—including ABC News, CBS News, CNN, Fox News, NBC News, NPR, and the parliament of Canada—rely on World News Digest for a broader view of the issues that matter today.


  • Topic-based research support: World News Digest promotes understanding of a topic by combining the latest news with key context and background. It has been the source for authoritative news summaries and background articles since 1940.
  • Exclusive, extensive coverage: World News Digest is packed with more than 300,000 original articles from 1940 to today. These include overviews of historic events, country profiles, historical documents, biographies, research features, special reports, editorials, and editorial cartoons. World News Digest also provides easy access to extensive historical video footage from the 1940s through the 2010s, bringing decades of key historic events to life. This rich archive provides a solid foundation for research.
  • News headlines: World News Digest features up-to-the-minute coverage with news articles from Reuters®.
  • Facts and figures researchers can trust: World News Digest offers researchers accurate, objective, and concise coverage of the most vital stories and issues.
  • Information in context: In our age of information overload, World News Digest offers clear and cogent political, economic, and cultural features that give a sense of time, place, and circumstance.
  • Videos: World News Digest features a wealth of historical footage, filterable by decade, including Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 1941 “Day of Infamy” speech, footage from the Apollo 11 moon landing, President Reagan’s speech at the Brandenburg Gate in 1987, and hundreds more.
  • News Media Roundups: World News Digest spotlights timely, hot-button events of the week, linking to a wide range of editorially curated content about each event, including news articles, social media reaction, videos, editorial cartoons, and infographics.
  • Landmark Events in History: This section of World News Digest highlights major events, browsable by decade, from 1940 to today, including the attack on Pearl Harbor, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
  • Browse news by country, people, or topic: The Browse News options available in World News Digest allow for a geographical, biographical, or thematic approach to recent history and current events.
  • Facts and statistics: The Facts & Statistics section in World News Digest features encyclopedia content for facts, figures, and general information behind the news.
  • Historical Documents: This section of World News Digest features primary sources with introductory notes that provide context and background—perfect for strengthening critical-thinking skills.
  • U.S. Presidential Elections: This World News Digest section compiles news articles, photographs, primary sources, and more for each presidential election from 1940 to 2016, plus a 2020 Elections Guide.
  • That Day in History: This World News Digest feature enables users to search a specific date for all the news that happened that day. Students can find out what took place on their birthdays or other important dates, locate upcoming anniversaries of major events, or just get a snapshot of all the developments from notable dates in history.
  • Curriculum Tools: This section of World News Digest features writing and research tips for students and educators—emphasizing information literacy—including:
    • Advice on analyzing and understanding editorial cartoons, newspaper editorials, historical documents, online sources, and more
    • Guides for presenting research, including avoiding plagiarism, citing sources, summarizing articles, writing research papers, and writing and delivering speeches
    • Educator tools, including advice on assessing students’ speeches, exploring point of view, preventing plagiarism, and using editorial cartoons and newspaper editorials in class.
  • Background and overviews: World News Digest provides crucial overviews and special features summarizing key topics to jump-start research.
  • Authoritative sources: World News Digest features expertly researched and written content distilled from a multitude of carefully selected print and electronic sources to form the essential record of world events.


  • Editorial newsfeed, historical newspaper editorials, and editorial cartoons from national and international newspapers, adding context and perspective on news events from 1940 to today
  • “Forward in Time” and “Back in Time” links for a complete chronological chain of events
  • Key background information such as searchable historical documents and images, primary sources, country profiles, and obituaries
  • Research Features and in-depth coverage guides on high-interest topics
  • Objective, concise historical and current news summaries
  • Carefully curated videos and news graphics embedded into coverage of today’s latest developments
  • Background information for every country, with Google Maps
  • Google Translate for more than 100 languages
  • Subject-based Search Assist technology
  • Tabbed search results with filters
  • Dynamic citations in MLA and Chicago formats, with APA guidelines
  • Read Aloud tool
  • Featured Story widget
  • Uses HTTPS, a requirement for many new browser features, to protect the security and privacy of our users
  • Searchable Support Center with valuable help materials, how-to tips, tutorials, and live help chat.

SIIA CODiE Award Finalist, “Best General Reference Service” category

Library Journal Best Database, Runner-Up, “Best Integration of External Content” category

“…continues to excel in its value and reliability…Recommended.”

“…user friendly…in depth…comprehensive and easy to use…provides a wealth of unbiased information concerning national and international news events and is highly recommended.”
Reference Reviews

“…provides a wealth of information and will help students researching for a multitude of assignments.”
American Reference Books Annual

“…a must for students obtaining background information on a topic…intuitive for even novice users…”
Library Journal

For ordering, pricing, or other information, please call (800) 322-8755 or email