This article analyses the transformation of the familiar, linear scientific information chain into an interactive scientific communication network in response to concomitant changes in scientific research and education. Societal conditions are seen to lead to the concept of strategic research world-wide: research dominated by ''economy of scope''. Strategic research leads to transnational research enterprises - universities and other research institutions-with a focus on return of research capital investment, and thus on intellectual capital. This development calls for new ways of knowledge management that in turn has consequences for scientific communication. The scientific communication market is described in terms of four main forces and their interplay. These forces are the actor pair (author/reader), accessibility, content, and applicability. Scientific communication is described in terms of its four functions: registration, awareness, certification and archive. These forces and functions allow a strategic analysis of the scientific communication market and allow to discuss aspects of strategic correspondence to be applicable in e.g. describing the transformation from a paper-based system to communication in an electronic environment. The developments in research are seen to emphasize the already existing autonomous development of a ''unified archive'', lead us to review certification policies to include elements external to research and lead us to consider new structures for communication, and publications. The new structures are a result of the interactions in the market as described through the forces and the functions. The distinction between formal and informal communication is seen to become less useful. The need to review the structure and organization of the market becomes evident, in particular if we consider communication during research as well. This leads us to speculate if elements of the virtual organization are of relevance. Finally, the need for a coherent research programme on scientific communication is discussed.