nep-sog New Economics Papers
on Sociology of Economics
Issue of 2005‒10‒15
three papers chosen by
Jonas Holmström
Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration

  1. Should top universities be led by top researchers, and are they? By Amanda H Goodall
  2. Raiding and Signaling in the Academic Labor Market By Timothy J. Perri
  3. Evaluating claims of bias in academia : a comment on Klein and Western's "How many Democrats per Republican at UC-Berkeley and Stanford?" By Cohen-Cole,E.B.; Durlauf,S.N.

  1. By: Amanda H Goodall (Warwick Business School)
    Abstract: This paper addresses the question: should the world’s top universities be led by top researchers, and are they? The lifetime citations are counted by hand of the leaders of the world’s top 100 universities identified in a global university ranking. These numbers are then normalised by adjusting for the different citation conventions across academic disciplines. Two statistical measures are used -- Pearson’s correlation coefficient and Spearman’s rho. This study documents a positive correlation between the lifetime citations of a university’s president and the position of that university in the global ranking. Better universities are run by better researchers. The results are not driven by outliers. That the top universities in the world -- who have the widest choice of candidates -- systematically appoint top researchers as their vice chancellors and presidents seems important to understand. There are two main areas of contribution. First, this paper attempts to use bibliometric data to address a performance-related question of a type not seen before (to the author’s knowledge). Second, despite the importance of research to research universities -- as described in many mission-statements -- no studies currently exist that ask whether it matters if the head of a research university is himself or herself a committed researcher. Given the importance of universities in the world, and the difficulty that many have in appointing leaders, this question seems pertinent.
    Keywords: citations, leadership, world university rankings, university presidents
    JEL: A
    Date: 2005–10–11
  2. By: Timothy J. Perri
    Abstract: Publications signal a professor’s productivity and may lead to raids by other universities. A raided professor learns the value of non-wage benefits at a raiding university, and will quit only if benefits elsewhere are relatively high. The social value of these benefits suggests research may be efficient even in the absence of a direct social value from research. Other results are: in some cases, a school may preempt signaling by paying a higher wage, but it will only do so when signaling is inefficient; and it is inefficient for a university to commit to not match outside offers.
    Date: 2005
  3. By: Cohen-Cole,E.B.; Durlauf,S.N. (University of Wisconsin-Madison, Social Systems Research Institute)
    Date: 2005

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