How do scientists document their research? As electronic means of communication become the norm, this question has taken on special urgency. If we don’t understand the process of record-keeping within the sciences, we are in danger of losing our scientific memory – with severe legal, financial and cultural consequences. This article introduces the connection between scientific practice and the records-keeping process, indicating how little we know of the technological, administrative and cultural dimensions of this relationship and how it has changed over time. Archival research that analyses this connection will enable the development of strategies to deal with current and future problems. But how can we fund this research?
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