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    • Join Date: May 2008
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    #1

    "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    Hello.

    The police are carrying out a thorough investigation into the accicent.
    The police are carrying out a thorough investigation of the accicent.

    Are both grammatically correct?

    Thank you.

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    #2

    Re: "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    Yes, they are.


    • Join Date: May 2008
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    #3

    Re: "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    - the investigation into the collapse of the building
    - the investigation of the collapse of the building

    Isn't there even a small difference in meaning?


    • Join Date: May 2008
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    #4

    Re: "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    investigation - Definition from Longman English Dictionary Online

    investigation into
    The authorities are planning to launch a full-scale investigation into the crash.

    Do you think that into fits better than "of" here?

    investigation of
    Baker demanded an investigation of the district attorney's office.


    Do you think that of fits better than "into" here?


    • Join Date: Jul 2009
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    #5

    Re: "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    Quote Originally Posted by Daruma View Post
    - the investigation into the collapse of the building
    - the investigation of the collapse of the building

    Isn't there even a small difference in meaning?
    This is another interesting question, which goes well beyond what typical grammar books and other ESL-EFL method books endeavor to explain.

    After giving this some consideration, I would say that the main thing here is not a difference in meaning, but when one or the other would be used. I would say that "investigation into" would more likely be followed by a phrase that represents an event or an action, and "investigation of" would more likely be followed by a phrase that identifies a person, people, or an organization, which brings us to your next question.
    Last edited by PROESL; 12-Sep-2009 at 01:08.


    • Join Date: Jul 2009
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    #6

    Re: "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    Quote Originally Posted by Daruma View Post
    investigation - Definition from Longman English Dictionary Online

    investigation into
    The authorities are planning to launch a full-scale investigation into the crash.

    Do you think that into fits better than "of" here?

    investigation of
    Baker demanded an investigation of the district attorney's office.

    Do you think that of fits better than "into" here?

    investigation into
    The authorities are planning to launch a full-scale investigation into the crash.

    Do you think that into fits better than "of" here? - No, I don't. The noun-preposition collocation "investigation into" is correct for this sentence.


    investigation of
    Baker demanded an investigation of the district attorney's office.

    Do you think that of fits better than "into" here? - No, I don't. The noun collocation "investigation of" is correct for this sentence.


    an investigation of the district attorney's office. < I think it's interesting to note that "investigation of" is followed by a noun phrase that identifies a person or people.


    a full-scale investigation into the crash. - And here, I think it's interesting to note that "investigation into" is followed by a noun phrase that identifies an event.

    There could be something to this. It could be a pattern, but one would have to investigate further and search for many examples to confirm whether or not this pattern is typical enough to use as a guideline.


    • Join Date: May 2008
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    #7

    Re: "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    Quote Originally Posted by PROESL View Post
    This is another interesting question, which goes well beyond what typical grammar books and other ESL-EFL method books endeavor to explain.

    After giving this some consideration, I would say that the main thing here is not a difference in meaning, but when one or the other would be used. I would say that "investigation into" would more likely be followed by a phrase that represents an event or an action, and "investigation of" would more likely be followed by a phrase that identifies a person, people, or an organization, which brings us to your next question.
    - the investigation into the collapse of the building
    - the investigation of the collapse of the building


    A collapse is not a person or an organization but an event, so "into" is correct, isn't it?
    Last edited by Daruma; 12-Sep-2009 at 01:20.


    • Join Date: Jul 2009
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    #8

    Re: "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    Quote Originally Posted by Daruma View Post
    - the investigation into the collapse of the building
    - the investigation of the collapse of the building

    A collapse is not a person or an organization but an event, so "into" is correct, isn't it?
    I wouldn't use this as a guide to determine correctness, but, yes, "the investigation into the collapse of the building" is correct, and it sounds better than using "of". This doen't mean that we won't find the phrase "investigation of the collapse of the building" by doing a search. So it's not a rule or a guide; it's just an observation.


    • Join Date: May 2008
    • Posts: 1,157
    #9

    Re: "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    Thank you very much, ESLPRO.

    Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary
    On this page, you'll see:
    Police began an investigation into/of the incident.

    ESLPRO, do you prefer "into" here?


    • Join Date: Jul 2009
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    #10

    Re: "investigation into something" and "investigation of something"

    Quote Originally Posted by Daruma View Post
    Thank you very much, ESLPRO.

    Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary
    On this page, you'll see:
    Police began an investigation into/of the incident.

    ESLPRO, do you prefer "into" here?
    Yes, I do prefer "investigation into the incident" in this sentence.

    This is something to consider. An event is something one can step into. However, one cannot step "into a person, people, or an organization".

    The preposition "into" indicates movenment, so it would be logical to think that one can go into a circumstance, situation, or event. It would seem less likely that that we would have the same abstract consideration of people and organizations in general.

    Here's another consideration for the preposition "into".

    I don't want to go into that now. = I don't want to talk about that now. - that, meaning that topic, which could mean that circumstance, situation, or event

    *I don't want to go into those people. - not good - okay structurally, but not logically - incorrect

    I don't want to speak of those people now. Of course, "about" is possible, as well.

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