Authors: Brian Kahin
January 1, 1992
Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University

BUILDING INFORMATION INFRASTRUCTURE is the outcome of a joint project by the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University Program on Science, Technology and Public Policy Program and the Program on Strategic Computing and Telecommunications in the Public Sector. BUILDING INFORMATION INFRASTRUCTURE is also the first original book published by Primis, McGraw-Hill''s new electronically based, on-demand publishing program.

The National Research and Education Network (NREN) is the integrating component of the U.S. initiative in high performance computing and communications supported by both the Bush Administration and Congress. It is not an untested vision but the further evolution and enhancement of the present Internet -- an open, enabling environment of interoperating networks and distributed resources that uses fiber optic networks already built by the private sector. Originally conceived as a tool for scientists engaged in advanced computing, the NREN is now seen by educators, librarians, and publishers as a broadbased utility for transforming the ways knowledge is delivered and used. At the same time, the evolving Internet, already partially privatized and commercialized, is increasingly viewed as a key applications- driven path to the broadband infrastructure of the future.

BUILDING INFORMATION INFRASTRUCTURE presents the NREN as a practical enterprise in developing information infrastructure that must be informed by economic, legal, and technological insights. Written for a diverse audience in government, industry, and education, the book is intended as an aid to planning and policy development at local, state, and national levels.