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It is important to gain data to verify or falsify your assumption about business model.

Does the infinitive act as a purpose, being same as in order to,

Or does it act as an object complement by describing the intended or desired action of the noun data.

Or are both interpretations possible?

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  • Object complements consist of NPs and AdjPs, never clauses. So I'm inclined to say it's a purpose adjunct.
    – BillJ
    Mar 10, 2019 at 16:05
  • And an action or purpose is not necessarily implied by data, so that's a semantic reason to doubt that it is a complement.
    – Colin Fine
    Mar 10, 2019 at 18:42

1 Answer 1

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It is important to gain data [to verify or falsify your assumption about business model].

Object complements consist of NPs and AdjPs, but never clauses.

So the bracketed infinitival clause can only be a purpose adjunct. Note the possibility of inserting "in order", which freely occurs with such adjuncts.

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  • Thanks! Consider this sentence," I asked him to finish my work.", what should we call the infinitive in this sentence?
    – Kathy
    Mar 11, 2019 at 1:57
  • @Kathy "Ask" is a catenative verb, and "to finish my homework" is its catenative complement. The intervening noun "him" is the syntactic object of "ask", but only the understood subject of "finish".
    – BillJ
    Mar 11, 2019 at 7:25
  • Thank you again for the answer, I will have a look at catenative verb !
    – Kathy
    Mar 11, 2019 at 13:24
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    @Kathy This may help: link
    – BillJ
    Mar 11, 2019 at 14:10

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