China Reference Works

An indispensable reference collection of dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks, atlases and more

China Reference Works (CRWO) is an authoritative, comprehensive and continuously updated reference database. It includes nearly 12,000 works from over 300 of China’s leading publishers, including dictionaries, bilingual dictionaries, specialized dictionaries, thesauruses, encyclopedias, illustrated books, biographies, handbooks, and so on. Content in CRWO covers a wide range of subjects, including philosophy, art, social science, culture, education, natural science, engineering, medicine, etc.

Offered via the China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI) platform, CRWO presents a digitized encyclopedia of Chinese knowledge and culture, integrating various types of reference works into a single platform. With in-depth indexing and classification, multiple options for browsing content, and powerful search and discovery tools, CRWO is an invaluable online resource for all aspects of Chinese studies.

NEW Collection Available on the Nanjing Massacre. Learn more.

Reference Works

Key Stats

  • Archive: 1965-present
  • Language: Chinese with English interface
  • Country: China
  • Number of Titles: nearly 12,000
  • Frequency: Daily updates
  • Format: Full text
  • Producer: Tongfang Knowledge Network Ltd.
  • Platform: CNKI (TKN)

About CRWO


CRWO includes nearly 12,000 volumes of reference books going back to 1965.

  • Over 20 million entries and over 1 million graphics
  • Collected from over 300 renowned Chinese publishers
  • 65% of the reference works are exclusively licensed to CNKl
  • Covers various types of reference works, including dictionaries, handbooks, encyclopedias, chronicles, manuals, etc.
  • Includes 37 special-subject databases, highlighting Chinese culture, ethnic customs, and the development of various industries and disciplines in China
Features and Functions
  • Large and comprehensive: The largest, continuously updated Chinese reference works online database. Covers nearly all classic and authoritative reference works in the current market. In-depth indexing and classification make for a powerful, convenient reference tool.
  • Well-written and well-illustrated content: Contains a massive amount of pictures on various fields of Chinese culture with detailed descriptions, such as archeology, traditional arts, historical events, ancient architecture, unique animals and plants, a unique resource for the study of Chinese history, culture and geography.
  • Authoritative and professional: Collected titles are all compiled by experts and published by well-known publishers A precise and authoritative online source for referencing and citation.
  • Robust browse and search tools: Browse books within 10 series and 168 subjects, and group results by type, title, publisher, or publication time. Searches include basic, advanced, book, supplementary info, and search in selections. Users can enter multiple search fields including entry, term, entry title, book title, publisher, and author. Search results can be sorted by relevance, character amount and publication time.
  • Extended learning with knowledge networks: Each entry includes CNKI’s Knowledge Network Node, with links to related content in journal articles, newspapers, master’s theses, doctoral dissertations, conference proceedings, and yearbooks, a powerful tool for deeper research.
NEW! Special Collection Available:

Historical Materials on the Nanjing Massacre

For more than ten years scholars visited museums all over the world to gather documentation on the Nanjing Massacre (1937-1938). What they found includes historical materials and accounts of the atrocity by perpetrators, victims and more.

This documentation and research was compiled into a 72-volume set well-known among many scholars as The Collection of Historical Materials on the Nanjing Massacre 南京大屠杀史料集. Available now as an online resource in the CRWO database, scholars can take advantage of the platform’s enhanced searching capabilities to discover even more insights from this authoritative reference work.

The digital edition of the 72-volume set is available now for a one-time purchase. Discounted pricing is available. Contact us to learn more or request a trial.

About China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI)

CNKI is the world’s most comprehensive online resource for accessing China’s intellectual output. This powerful platform is the product of Tongfang Knowledge Network, Beijing, and encompasses academic journals, dissertations, conference papers, news, and many other resources that put the knowledge of China in the sciences and humanities at your fingertips. With tens of millions of articles and growing every day, CNKI is a foundation for any serious research on China. CNKI is hosted in the United States by East View and updated daily.

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