nep-sog New Economics Papers
on Sociology of Economics
Issue of 2013‒10‒18
four papers chosen by
Jonas Holmström
Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration

  1. Do the Best Scholars and Economists Attract the Highest Speaking Fees? By Ho Fai Chan; Bruno S. Frey; Jana Gallus; Markus Schaffner; Benno Torgler; Stephen Whyte
  2. La produzione scientifica italiana e il suo impatto: un confronto internazionale relativo alle Aree CUN bibliometriche By Malgarini, Marco
  3. Metodi bibliometrici e revisione dei pari per la valutazione della ricerca: un confronto metodologico By Cicero, Tindaro; Malgarini, Marco; Nappi, Carmela Anna; Peracchi, Franco
  4. The Political Economy of Textbook Writing : Paul Samuelson and the making of the first Ten Editions of Economics (1945-1976) By Yann Giraud

  1. By: Ho Fai Chan; Bruno S. Frey; Jana Gallus; Markus Schaffner; Benno Torgler; Stephen Whyte
    Abstract: External prominence (measured by the number of pages indexed on search engines or TED talk invitations) can be capitalized on the speakers' market while research performance (measured by publication and citation indicators) cannot. There is thus a clear distinction between the capitalization of external and internal prominence. Success through authorship of books is also positively correlated with speaking fees, however once we control for external prominence the statistical significance disappears. We find that academics profit from having been awarded a major book prize.
    Keywords: Academic Performance, Scholarly Importance, Market for Economists, Social Importance of Economists, External and Internal Influence, Book Prizes, TED Talks
    JEL: A11 A13 Z18 Z19
    Date: 2013–10–10
  2. By: Malgarini, Marco
    Abstract: The paper aims at evaluating the position of the Italian research system in the international scenario, using data from ISI-Web of Sciences and Scopus database for the period 1981-2010. Bibliometric information have been first of all organized according to the Italian classification of scientific disciplines; the analysis concentrated on hard sciences, medical sciences, engeneering and economics, where the use of bibliometric indicators to evaluate research is rather widespread. Indicators analysed concern scientific production and its impact, scientific collaboration, scientific productivity and research excellence. We show that scientific productivity in Italy is remarkably high; Italy is on par with the international average in terms of scientific production and impact, but it is still lagging behind with respect to major competitors in Europe (Germany, Netherlands, Uk) and in the world (US).
    Keywords: spesa in R&S; indicatori bibliometrici; confronti internazionali; produzione scientifica
    JEL: H52 I20 I23
    Date: 2013–06–30
  3. By: Cicero, Tindaro; Malgarini, Marco; Nappi, Carmela Anna; Peracchi, Franco
    Abstract: The Italian Research Evaluation exercise for the period 2004-2010 has analyzed almost 185,000 among articles, books, patents and other scientific products submitted by Italian Universities and other public research bodies. In most cases, scientific publications have been peer reviewed; however, in hard sciences, medicines, engineering and economics, bibliometric indicators have also been used. For those areas, we have extracted a representative sample of scientific products, equal to the 10% of the reference population of submitted products, to be evaluated both with peer review and biblometric methods. Our analysis shows that peer review and bibliometric evaluations exhibit a level of concordance higher than that observed among two different reviewers of the same article. In almost any scientific discipline, however, there is a systematic difference among peer and bibliometric evaluations: more specifically, bibliometric scores are on average significantly higher than those obtained with the peer review. Overall, our results obtained fully support the choice adopted in the Italian exercise of using both evaluation techniques in order to assess the quality of Italian research institutions.
    Keywords: Indicatori bibliometrici; revisione dei pari; valutazione della ricerca
    JEL: I20 I23
    Date: 2013–10–06
  4. By: Yann Giraud (THEMA - Théorie économique, modélisation et applications - CNRS : UMR8184 - Université de Cergy Pontoise)
    Abstract: Over the past two decades, numerous contributions to the history of economics have tried to assess Paul Samuelson's political positioning by tracing it in the subsequent editions of his famous textbook Economics. This literature, however, has provided no consensus about the location of Samuelson's political ideas. While some authors believe that Samuelson has always had inclinations toward interventionism, others conclude that he more often acted as a pro-business advocate. The purpose of this paper is not to argue for one of these two interpretations but to depict the making of Economics itself as a political process. By 'political' it is not meant the conduct of party politics but the many political elements that a textbook author has to take into account if he wants to be published and favorably received. I argue that the "middle of the road" stance that Samuelson adopted in the book was consciously constructed by the MIT economist, with the help of his home institution and his publishing company, McGraw-Hill, to ensure both academic freedom and the success of the book. The reason for which the stance developed is related to pre-McCarthyist right-wing criticisms of the textbook and how Samuelson and the MIT department had to endure the pressures from members of the Corporation (MIT's Board of Trustees), who tried to prevent the publication of the textbook and threatened Samuelson's tenure at MIT as soon as 1947 - when early manuscripts were circulated. As a result, it was decided in accordance with both the Corporation and McGraw-Hill that the Readings volume would be published to balance conflicting ideas about state intervention. Following these early criticisms, the making of the subsequent editions relied on a network of instructors and referees all over the US in order to make it as successful and consensual as possible. This seemed to work quite well in the 1950s and for a good portion of the 1960s, until Economics became victim of its own success and was seen, in an ironical twist of fate, as a right wing text by younger, radical economists. From now on, Samuelson will try to have his book sent as often as possible to the radicals for referring process, with mixed results. Eventually, the book became criticized from both its left and its right.
    Date: 2013–10–07

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