Naomi L.T. Courter
Network Services Specialist
CONCERT Data Network MCNC Center for Communications
3021 Cornwallis Road
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709 USA
v: (919) 248-1807
f: (919) 248-1405
Education, K12; Education, higher; Education, continuing or distance; Research, academic; Research, government; Research, commercial
Partnerships between public and private sector
Supporting Documentation (contact author for more information):
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Profile: Oxford University Press
by Naomi L.T. Courter
Paul Betz of Oxford University Press has started using the Internet as an important tool for acquiring information for a project called the American National Biography (ANB). The ANB will comprise roughly 20,000 articles on Americans from all walks of life including politics, the military, religion, business, science, law, the arts and sports. The chronological starting point is the arrival of the first Europeans (the Vikings) in North America. The subjects of the biographical sketches must have died before 1991 and made a mark on the history of the land and cultures now encompassed by the United States.
As copy chief of the ANB, Paul Betz coordinates the copyediting and proofreading of the articles, which are to be published in twenty volumes by the end of 1995. From his desktop computer in Cary, through CONCERT- CONNECT, he can access his account with the Research Libraries Information Network (RLIN) in Mountain View, California, which is a vast database that Betz and his colleagues use to verify bibliographical citations in ANB articles.
There are at present 7,000 contributors to the ANB, many of whom are scholars with Internet or Bitnet accounts. Drafts of their articles are evaluated by advisory editors and then given final approval by the general editor, Professor John A. Garraty of Columbia University. Once the articles have been copyedited, Betz confers with ANB contributors about final changes, often by phone, but now with increasing frequency via Internet e-mail.
Through the efforts of the ANB staff at Oxford University Press, Professor John Garraty, and the ANB contributors, the American National Biography will be a much more diverse biographical dictionary than any previous one dealing with colonial America and the United States.
For additional information contact:
American National Biography
Oxford University Press
2001 Evans Road
Cary, NC 27513
v: (919) 677-0977 x5098