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Nano Technology Essay

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Below is an essay on "Nano Technology" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Jointly published by Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest
and Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht

Vol. 59, No. 3 (2004) 425–465

Multidisciplinarity, interdisciplinarity, and patterns of
research collaboration in nanoscience and nanotechnology
Department of Philosophy, University of South Carolina, Columbia (USA)
This paper first describes the recent development that scientists and engineers of many
disciplines, countries, and institutions increasingly engage in nanoscale research at breathtaking
speed. By co-author analysis of over 600 papers published in “nano journals” in 2002 and 2003, I
investigate if this apparent concurrence is accompanied by new forms and degrees of multi- and
interdisciplinarity as well as of institutional and geographic research collaboration. Based on a new
visualization method, patterns of research collaboration are analyzed and compared with those of
classical disciplinary research. I argue that current nanoscale research reveals no particular patterns
and degrees of interdisciplinarity and that its apparent multidisciplinarity consists of different
largely mono-disciplinary fields which are rather unrelated to each other and which hardly share
more than the prefix “nano”.

1. Introduction
BRAUN et al. (1997) analyzed the early growth of nanoscience and nanotechnology
during the period 1986–1995 by counting the occurrences of the prefix “nano” in the
titles of scientific papers. They found exponential growth with the remarkable doubling
time of 1.6 years. Furthermore, their title word analysis allowed to delineate the main
research topics then (i.e., nanocrystals, nanoparticles, nanocomposites, nanoclusters,
and nanotubes) as well as their respective trends, giving the impression of a rapidly
emerging and rather clearly defined research field in which mainly physicists and
chemists are involved.
In the mid-1990s, governmental funding of nanoscale research was so low that most...

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