Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Information Science and Librarianship
Nature of Science, Research, Systems of Higher Education, Museum Science
Abstract In the context of bridging the so-called externalist and cognitive perspectives on the growth of research communities, a cancer “problem domain” is examined (1) to distinguish a growth in knowledge from a proliferating research literature, and (2) show how measurement of formal communication, uninformed by the “historical record,” clarifies or distorts sociological interpretations of innovation and growth in biomedicine. Specifically, coauthorship and citation networks are analyzed for reverse transcriptase researchers, 1970–74. This analysis reveals the visibility of large National Cancer Institute laboratories in the research literature, but demonstrates the need to augment disaggregated network data with intellectual and social (policy) history to explain the growth and structure of the domain.
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