Information Through the Printed Word: Book Publishing v. 1: The Dissemination of Scholarly, Scientific and Intellectual Knowledge

Machlup, Fritz

This is a report on the findings of several years of research by a team of varying size, up to 16 persons at the peak of activities and, because of turnover in personnel and the use of occasional consultants , altogether 29 persons over the entire period. The project was financed chiefly by the National Science Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities through a series of grants to New York University, with considerable cost-sharing by New York University, funds from two other sources, and supplemental contributions of money and unpaid services by Professor Fritz Machlup, Principal Investigator, and Kenneth Leeson, Senior Research Associate . The title of the project has changed over the years, partly in order to accommodate an expansion of its scope , and ultimately for the sake of euphony . In the first application for an NSF grant the project was called "The Production and Distribution of Scientific and Technological Information." When the scope of the research was extended to include scholarly knowledge in all disciplines, including the humanities , the title underwent a commensurate expansion: "The Dissemination of Scholarly Knowledge: A Study of the Economic Viability of the Publication of Books and Journals and of the Maintenance of Library Services and Associated Activities . " This was more than a mouthful and badly in need of cosmetic surgery to meet higher standards of English composition. Hence the new title: Information through the Printed Word: The Dissemination of Scholarly, Scientific and Intellectual Knowledge . If any reader, addicted to the "s & t" label, misses the adjective "technical" (or more correctly "technological") as an additional modifier of the noun knowledge, or information, let him be assured that the three adjectives exhibited in the title fully cover all information generated by engineering sciences; indeed, any one of the adjectives would do.

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