An early commetnary on Measuring Scientific Research

Eugene Garfield eugene.garfield at THOMSON.COM
Fri Jul 14 12:33:37 EDT 2006

In an address before the Scientific Research Society of America on the
occasion of his receiving the William Procter Prize at Washington, D.
C.,  December 29th, 1958,

C. Guy Suits, Vice President and Director of Research of General
Electric Company, quoted some verses by his associate Ned Landon ("whose
tongue fit neatly in his cheek", and wrote "The Chief Executive's
Utterly Exact Method for Measuring Scientific Research":


I multiply your products by the words I can't pronounce,

And weigh your published papers to the nearest half an ounce;

I add a healthy bonus for research that's really pure

(And if it's also useful, your job ill be secure).


I integrate your patent-rate upon a monthly basis

And I figure what your place in the race to conquer space is;

Your scientific stature I weigh upon some scales

Whose final calibration is the company's net-to-sales.


And so I rcreate numbers where there were none before;

And thus hve facts and figures and formulae galore-

And these volumes of statistics make the whole thing very clear;

Our research should cost exactly what we've budgeted this year!




Eugene Garfield, PhD. email:  garfield at 
home page: <> 
Tel: 215-243-2205 Fax 215-387-1266

Chairman Emeritus, ISI <>  
3501 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-3302
President, The Scientist LLC.
400 Market Street, Suite 1250, Philadelphia, PA 19106-2501


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