How New Terms Are Adopted
PAIS International from CSA strives to provide access to the latest concepts and trends in the literature through its PAIS Subject Headings.
As a new term surfaces in the materials being indexed, we insure that
it is immediately searchable electronically by including it in the abstract
of the bibliographic record. Examples are 'Baby boom' and 'Generation
X.' Many of these terms are short-lived slang that will not be entered
into the PAIS Subject Heading List. But others have long-term
potential. Frequently, when a term is used repeatedly and there appears
to be a growing body of literature centered on it, we establish it as
a subject heading and connect it to related terms with appropriate "see"
and "see also" references. Recently, we decided that
material on E-commerce was increasing and that we needed to set up the
heading "Electronic Commerce." We also reviewed the backfile
of records and added the heading "Electronic Commerce" to records
Similarly, there are times when the literature uses a newer term for
an existing concept, and the existing PAIS subject heading for it
has become quaint and old-fashioned. Then we establish the newer term
with related cross references and re-index the records in the backfile.
This process keeps the database up to date. Users do not have to check
two terms for one concept. For instance, we added the term "Pasta
industry" to records in the backfile that have the older subject
heading "Macaroni industry."
In addition, to keep current with political changes worldwide, we continually add new geographic headings (such as Kivu (province) or Zaire) and rename geographic subject headings (such as Mumbai, India), personal names (such as Kabila, Laurent-Desire), and names of organizations (such as United Nations - Development program - Sustainable energy and development division).
Also, for easier access, PAIS has classified its 7,000 Subject Headings Authority File under 24 Broad Topics and 569 Subtopics.