The Structural Engineer > Archive > Volume 61 (1983) > Issues > Issue 5 > Correspondence on Communicating Information from Research to Practice in Structural Engineering by K
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Correspondence on Communicating Information from Research to Practice in Structural Engineering by K.R. Moffatt

Mr B. Archer (Sunderland Polytechnic): Many of the applied research papers currently published in the journals of the engineering institutions deal with highly specialised topics that are of little interest to the majority of their members. Many of these papers contain typographical errors which are detected only by careful study. I have queried authors about such errors many months after publication and found that I have been the first to do so. I believe this to be an indication of how few people study these technical research papers, which are offered to the editorial boards of institution journals at no cost, because the researcher obtains his reward from the renown that accrues from the list of papers that he has had published. I would suggest that the editorial boards drop their present passive role of making a selection from a set of papers offered for publication and instead adopt an active role, inviting researchers to prepare review papers giving information on all research work being carried out in selected areas whiah are known to be of interest to their institution members. These papers need not be written in technical language steeped in jargon unfamiliar to practising engineers, but they must give information on who is doing what in particular specialisations. This type of information has always been available to researchers working in specialised areas through the professorial network, but it has not been readily available to practising engineers. Given this information, the practising engineers can contact the appropriate researchers to arrange ways in which they can discuss, in depth, topics of mutual interest.