The Production of Scientific Knowledge


    THE increase of scientific knowledge can be divided into three steps: first, the production of new knowledge by means of laboratory research; secondly, the publication of this knowledge in the form of papers and abstracts of papers; thirdly, the digestion of the new knowledge and its absorption into the general mass of information by critical comparison with other experiments on the same or similar subjects. The whole process, in fact, may be likened to the process of thought. We have first the perception by means of the senses. The percept is then stored in the memory, and in the mind is compared with other previously stored percepts, and finally forms with them a conception.

    Access options

    Rent or Buy article

    Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


    All prices are NET prices.


    1. 1

      From a paper read before the Rochester Sertion of the Optical Society of America on October 23, by Dr. C. E. Kenneth Mees .

    2. 2

      "The Organisation of Industrial Scientific Research," Science, 1916 p. 763 NATURE, 1916 pp. 411 and 431.

    Download references

    Rights and permissions

    Reprints and Permissions

    About this article

    Cite this article

    The Production of Scientific Knowledge. Nature 100, 355–358 (1918).

    Download citation

    Further reading


    By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.