Working papers allow access to the latest research without the delay caused by a lengthy publishing process of academic journals. The field of economics has a strong tradition of working paper exchange. Working papers are produced:
by researchers at universities to be later published in books, journals, or presented at conferences, and
by governmental bodies, NGOs, research centers and professional organizations, such as the Federal Reserve System, the World Bank, the National Bureau of Economic Research, etc.
SSRN is a preprint server for economics, business, law and humanities. Many universities and research centers publish their working papers at SSRN. Uploading and searching working papers is free; a number of fee-based sources is also available.
A collaborative effort of hundreds of volunteers in 68 countries to enhance the dissemination of research in economics. The heart of the project is a decentralized database of working papers, journal articles and software components.
Hosted by the University of Connecticut, the Internet Documents in Economics Access Services (IDEAS) database contains over 700,000 citations, including links to working papers, articles, chapters, and books. A RePEc database.