nep-sog New Economics Papers
on Sociology of Economics
Issue of 2014‒02‒08
two papers chosen by
Jonas Holmström
Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration

  1. Ceremonial Science: The State of Russian Economics Seen Through the Lens of the Work of ‘Doctor of Science’ Candidates By Alexander Libman; Joachim Zweynert
  2. Age and Scientific Genius By Benjamin Jones; E.J. Reedy; Bruce A. Weinberg

  1. By: Alexander Libman (Frankfurt School of Finance and Management); Joachim Zweynert
    Abstract: The paper investigates the current status of economic research in Russia using a previously unexplored dataset of Russian ‘Doctor of Science’ (Dr. Sc.) theses. The Dr. Sc. degree is a postdoctoral qualification necessary for career advancement at most Russian universities. Thus, by looking at the Dr. Sc. theses we are able to provide a systematic overview of ‘average’ scientific standards in Russia, particularly at the mass universities at which most administrators and bureaucrats are trained. We show that the level of integration of Russian economics into the international scientific community remains very low. Moreover, we obtain a picture of a mostly ‘ceremonial’ science. Researchers combine references to ‘classical’ research, formal methods and practical application merely as an instrument for presenting the mostly verbal argument in a more scientific’ way.
    Keywords: Russian economics, international integration, scientific methodology
    JEL: A11 B41 I23 P39
    Date: 2014–01
  2. By: Benjamin Jones; E.J. Reedy; Bruce A. Weinberg
    Abstract: Great scientific output typically peaks in middle age. A classic literature has emphasized comparisons across fields in the age of peak performance. More recent work highlights large underlying variation in age and creativity patterns, where the average age of great scientific contributions has risen substantially since the early 20th Century and some scientists make pioneering contributions much earlier or later in their life-cycle than others. We review these literatures and show how the nexus between age and great scientific insight can inform the nature of creativity, the mechanisms of scientific progress, and the design of institutions that support scientists, while providing further insights about the implications of aging populations, education policies, and economic growth.
    JEL: J11 O31
    Date: 2014–01

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