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Is it correct to say "A competition on this field" or "A competition in this field"? the latter sounds better to me but I'm not 100% sure. To clarify: an example could be a competition among software developers to make the fastest application to solve a maths problem.

Thanks!

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    Would you kindly edit your question to explain what kind of competition and what kind of field you are thinking of? My answer covers most cases but, as I said, there are exceptions.
    – JavaLatte
    Commented Jul 19, 2020 at 9:59
  • Hi. For example, a competition among software developers to make the fastest application to solve a maths problem. Commented Jul 20, 2020 at 0:23
  • Yes, that would be in. But please edit your question to add those details. That helps other users to easily understand your question.
    – JavaLatte
    Commented Jul 20, 2020 at 8:24

3 Answers 3

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Assuming you're talking about "field" as in "field of expertise", it would always be "in".

He is the best in his field.
I am an expert in the field of software development.

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Peter’s an expert in his field.--Longman Are you still in the same field (= are you doing the same type of work)?--- Cambridge

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Short answer: it's almost always in this field. You can easily see this in this NGram graph. If you drill down and look at the exceptions, they can be summarised as:

  • documents written by non-native english speakers
  • where you are talking about the field: look for words like data and book
  • when you are turning attention to the field
  • when you are talking about the field as a whole, rather than some small part of it
  • when you have some effect on the field look for words like influence, impose, work
  • when you are talking about a battlefield
  • in computer databases, you create an index on a field in a table.

Here are a few typical examples:

It is finally argued that the progress of this work on autopoietic structures, more than on micelles, must be based on vesicles and liposomes, and preliminary work on this field is discussed.

The vast majority of these deal with hi-fi preamplifiers and power amplifiers, and this book concentrates on this field.

This is, first, because most of the previous books on this field are descriptive rather than explanatory in focus.

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