Professor Emeritus, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, 2051 and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Champaign, IL 61820-6211. W. Boyd Rayward held professorial and deanship positions in the Graduate Library School of the University of Chicago and the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. He was editor of the Library Quarterly from 1975-1980, is currently North American editor of Library History and has become co-editor with John Unsworth of Library Trends. His research examines the history of the international organization of knowledge. Recent studies have been on Paul Otlet’s ideas in relation to hypertext and the beginnings of modern information science, a number of utopian schemes of knowledge organization including H.G.Wells’s idea of a world brain, and, from a historical point of view, the implications of digitisation and networking for libraries and museums.
This is a slightly revised excerpt from his paper published under the same title in Transnational Associations, 1-2/2003, 4-15, reprinted with the permission of UIA.