Responsa (Latin: plural of responsum, "answers") comprise a body of written decisions and rulings given by legal scholars in response to questions addressed to them. In the modern era, the term is used to describe decisions and rulings made by scholars in historic religious law.
The Global Jewish Database (The Responsa Project) at Bar-Ilan University is the largest database of its kind. This database includes the full text of the Bible and its principal commentaries, the Babylonian Talmud with Rashi's commentary and Tosafot, the Jerusalem Talmud, the Mishneh Torah of Maimonides, 300 Rambam Commentaries (Friedberg ed.), Shulchan Aruch with commentaries, Midrashim, hundreds of books of responsa, searchable text of 10,000 articles from various Torah periodicals and collections, and the Talmudic Encyclopedia, representing a period of over three thousand years of Jewish literary creativity.
The Responsa ("shut") Project was started in 1963 at the Weizmann Institute, and has been expanded and maintained at Bar-Ilan Univsersity.
In 2007, the project received the Israel Prize.