Could the Internet Balkanize Science?

Science  29 Nov 1996:
Vol. 274, Issue 5292, pp. 1479-1480
DOI: 10.1126/science.274.5292.1479


The information explosion carried by the Internet represents a powerful technology, but at the same time, it carries risk. In their Perspective, Van Alstyne and Brynjolfsson argue that the ability to form global collaborations on the basis of scientific specialty could potentially diminish local interdisciplinary contact, which the authors dub “the balkanization of cyberspace.” Such balkanization is not inevitable, however, and depends on how scientists choose to use information technology. [Available as an Enhanced Perspective on Science Online with additional hypertext links and Internet resources]