Two years ago, only a third of those surveyed had access to the medium and even fewer actually used it. Now, the situation has changed dramatically. Some 90% are users. The only ones to fall out of the loop are recruiters ­ few of whom appear to use it.

Such a dramatic rise chimes with the rest of the industry. Indeed, many organisations are turning to the Net to transmit conference papers, an area which AQR is looking at. The one worry, which again came up in the Networker Survey, is that electronically transmitted papers can be subject to piracy or amendment.

The main problem with e-mail, as other research projects have found, is over-use. Growing volumes of mail entails growing resistance to reading it. The end result is that many individuals now run two email numbers in tandem.