SqlRender is part of the OHDSI Methods Library.


This is an R package for rendering parameterized SQL, and translating it to different SQL dialects. SqlRender can also be used as a stand-alone Java library and a command-line executable.


  • Supports a simple markup syntax for making SQL parameterized, and renders parameterized SQL (containing the markup syntax) to executable SQL
  • The syntax supports defining default parameter values
  • The syntax supports if-then-else structures
  • Has functions for translating SQL from one dialect (Microsoft SQL Server) to other dialects (Oracle, PostgreSQL, Amazon RedShift, Impala, IBM Netezza, Google BigQuery, Microsoft PDW, and SQLite)
  • Can be used as R package, Java library, or as stand-alone executable through a command-line interface


This exampe shows the use of parameters, as well as SqlRender’s {if} ? {then} : {else} syntax:

sql <- render("SELECT * FROM @a; {@b != ''}?{USE @b;}", a = "my_table", b = "my_schema")

will produce the variable sql containing this value:

"SELECT * FROM my_table; USE my_schema;"

subsequently running this code

sql <- translate(sql, "oracle")

will produce the variable sql containing this value:

"SELECT * FROM my_table; ALTER SESSION SET current_schema =  my_schema;"


The SqlRender package is an R package wrapped around a Java library. The rJava package is used as interface.

The Java library is available as a JAR file.

System Requirements

Running the package requires R with the package rJava installed. Also requires Java 1.6 or higher.


R package

In R, to install the latest stable version, install from CRAN:


To install the latest development version, install from GitHub:


Once installed, you can try out SqlRender in a Shiny app that comes with the package:

Command-line executable

You can fetch the JAR file in the inst/java folder of this repository, or use Maven as described above. Run this from the command line to get a list of options:

java -jar SqlRender.jar ?

User Documentation



SqlRender is licensed under Apache License 2.0


SqlRender is being developed in R Studio.

Development status

Stable. The code is actively being used in several projects.


  • This project is supported in part through the National Science Foundation grant IIS 1251151.