Paul Duguid, Adjunct Professor, School of Information
email:duguid at

I am an adjunct full professor at the School of Information at the University of California, Berkeley and formerly Professorial Research Fellow at Queen Mary, University of London.   Intermittently, I have held visiting positions at the University of Lille, the École Polytechnique in Paris, and Copenhagen Business School, and honorary positions at the universities of York and Lancaster in the U.K. From 1989 to 2001 I was affiliated to the Office of Central Management at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC); prior to that, a member of PARC's affiliated Institute for Research on Learning.

At Berkeley, I teach "Concepts of Information" (info 218) and "History of Information" (Info 103).

In fall 2017, I taught "The Information Society" with Dr. Ashwin Mathew. Since 2015, I have taught the Teaching Practicum for School of Information Graduate Student Instructors. Intermittently, I teach the School of Information's Doctoral Colloquium.

My current research interests include the history and development of trademarks and the history of the concept of information.

I recently finished working with Profs. Anthony Grafton (Princeton), Ann Blair (Harvard), and Anja Goeing (Zurich) on Information: A Historical Companion, to be published by Princeton University Press in January 2021. For this volume I have written the introduction and one of 13 long entries, while co-editing the other 12 long entries and the 100 or so short ones.

Full CV: pdf [430k]

Forthcoming and recent publications and talks:
[AD = "author's draft"]

In July I gave a talk to the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T) on "History and Information". The recording is on

I was interviewed about Information: A Historical Companion by Waseem Akhtar for his podcast "Bridging the Gaps: A Portal for Curious Minds." The podcast can also be found on SoundCloud .

No More Sucking Up to Zuckerberg: Behavioural Science Plus Profit-Driven Analytics Equals Disaster. TLS April 2, 2021

Information: A Historical Companion co-edited with Ann Blair, Anja-Silvia Goeing, and Anthony Grafton. Princeton University Press, forthcoming, 2021.

"Introduction" to Information: A Historical Companion. Princeton University Press, forthcoming, 2021.

"Communication, Computation, and Information," chapter 12 in Information: A Historical Companion. Princeton University Press, forthcoming, 2021.

When R meets D: The Social Life of Innovation. Invited presentation to the What is Research? Workshop. Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin, June 12-13, 2019.

Connecting the Dots: Information in Historical Perspective. Invited keynote, International Society for the Study of Information annual conference. Berkeley, June 2, 2019.

Early Marks: American Trademarks before U.S. Trademark Law. Business History, 2018.

Storm Clouds: The Persisting Problem of Sexism in Tech. TLS May 18, 2018

The Social Life of Information Third Edition, 2017, updated with a new preface by the authors and a new introduction by David Weinberger.

Information Empires, Attention Merchants, and the Public Sphere. Le Libellio d'Aegis 2017 13(1).

Towards a Surveillance Society? Thinking with and about Technology. Invited Presentation, Technology and the Human Future. New York Review of Books, Oslo, October 20-21, 2016.

Freedom with Information, Review of James Cortada, All the Facts,TLS September 28, 2016. [listen to podcast with TLS editor Stig Abell]

The Ageing of Information. Journal of the History of Ideas, 2015 76(3): 347-368

De Londres à Porto: Une Description du Marché du Vin au XVIIIème Siècle." Gerer et Comprendre--special issue "Décrire les marchés, un impératif scientifique" 2015 119: 13-21 English version

Making Sense of Economics. Invited Presentation. What's Wrong with the Economy--and with Economics? New York Review of Books New York, March 14-15, 2015

Trademark history

Early Marks: American Trademarks before U.S. Trademark Law. Business History 2016.

Information in the Mark and Marketplace: A Multivocal Account, Enterprise and Society, 2014 15(1): 1-30.

California Marking & Collective Amnesia, University of California Davis Law Review 2013 47(2): 581-600

Concepts of Information

The Ageing of Information. Journal of the History of Ideas, 2015 76(3): 347-368

Information in the Mark and Marketplace: A Multivocal Account, Enterprise and Society, 2014 15(1): 1-30.

Learning and Communities of practice

The Community of Practice Then and Now. In Ash Amin and Joanne Roberts, eds., Organizing for the Creative Economy: Community, Practice, and Capitalism. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008

"What Talking Tells Us," Organization Studies, 2006 27(12): 1794-1804. AD

Open source cultural projects

Search before grep: A Progress from Open to Closed? in Konrad Becker & Felix Stalder, eds., Deep Search Vienna: Studienverlag, 2009 AD

Inheritance and Loss? A Brief Survey of Google Books. First Monday, 2007 12(8)

Limits of Self-Organization: Peer Production and the 'Laws of Quality'. First Monday, 2006: 11(10)

After Entropy, Review of Clay Shirky, Here Comes Everybody. TLS May, 2008

Departure Points. Review of Andrew Keen, The Cult of the Amateur: How Today's Internet is Killing Our Culture. TLS September 12, 2007

Netizens Awake, review of Yochai Benkler, Wealth of Networks. TLS July 7, 2006

"PG Tips" [a critique of Project Gutenberg and ideas of the Web as a universal library] Times Literary Supplement [TLS] June 11, 2004

Media and materiality

Material Matters: The Past and the Futurology of the Book. In The Future of the Book, G. Nunberg, ed. Brussels, Belgium: Brepols, Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1996: 63-102

Borderline Issues, with J.S. Brown. Human-Computer Interaction, 9 (1)(1994): 3-36, invited paper for special issue on "context in design" with 25 commentaries by scholars and critics

Patrolling the Border: A reply to our critics, with J.S. Brown. Human-Computer Interaction 1994 9(1): 137-149

Supply chains

Brands in Chains. In T. Silva Lopes and P. Duguid, eds., Trademarks, Brands, and Competitiveness. London: Routledge, 2010

"Brands and Supply Chains: Governance before and after Chandler." In H. Dumez, ed., Gouverner les Organizations. L'Harmattan: Paris, 2004 AD

"Networks and Knowledge: The Beginning and End of the Port Commodity Chain, 1703-1860," Business History Review, 2005 79(3): 453-466 AD

Knowledge and economics

"Awards as Norms," response to Bruno Frey, "Awards as Compensation." European Management Review, 2007 4: 15-1

"Untidy or Untractable? G.B. Richardson's View of Economics." Aegis le Libello, 2005: 2-6 AD

"'The Art of Knowing': Social and Tacit Dimensions of Knowledge and the Limits of the Community of Practice," Information Society, 2005 21(2): 109-118. AD