It can be difficult and time-consuming to track down the exact source of a Bucky quote since Fuller said the same thing many times in various ways. Often the source of a “rogue” quote cannot be found, but similar quotes exist. The Synergetics Dictionary has approximately 22,000 Fuller quotes with citations. It is organized in alphabetical order. This and other recommended sources are listed below.

  1. E.J. Applewhite’s Synergetics Dictionary – Online version by Bob Gray (Click on the uppermost headline of the page to view contents.)
  2. The Buckminster Fuller Estate’s “Quote Gallery” (features a small selection of quotes with references)
  3. Buckminster Fuller’s own Basic Biography (1983) (PDF link)
  4. Wikiquote: Buckminster Fuller (extensive list of quotes)

Topic-Based Queries: Locating Source Materials


In addition to the resources below, you are welcome to contact BFI at [email protected] to ask for support in your research. We are happy to connect you with one of our volunteer professionals who may be able to assist.

Stanford University Special Collections

Stanford University acquired Buckminster Fuller’s extensive personal archives in 1999. According to Stanford, it is their largest single manuscript collection, comprising over 1,300 linear feet of papers, hundreds of hours of recordings, and numerous models.

Search the Stanford Special Collections database using the Online Archive of California (OAC) “Finding Aid” linked above. Read about the OAC here, and if you’re unfamiliar with the tool, this California State University Dominguez Hills short video tutorial is a helpful resource.

This video from California State University Dominguez Hills provides a short video tutorial on how to use a “finding aid.”
August 2, 2022 event includes extensive discussion about the Stanford Special Collections Fuller archive.
Visiting the Fuller Collection at Stanford

If you plan to visit or access the Fuller Collection, Tim Noakes, Head of Public Services, can answer any specific questions you have regarding your research visit. Two important notes:

  1. The Fuller collection is located off-site. Therefore, you must request materials “at least two full business days before planned date of use.”
  2. Plan to arrive on campus at least 45 minutes prior to any appointment; parking and security are extensive procedures.

The Internet Archive

The Internet Archive holds extensive Fuller material in a variety of media formats. Visit the Internet Archive.

Attribution, Permission, Citations

Be sure to cite your source material thoroughly. When permission is necessary (such as in the use of an image), the Estate of R. Buckminster Fuller holds copyrights to Fuller materials. They can be contacted for permissions for the use of materials in the Stanford Archive’s Fuller Collection. You may also refer to our Licensing page for more information.

Best of luck in your important research, and consider sharing your published material or final projects with us at [email protected].