nep-sog New Economics Papers
on Sociology of Economics
Issue of 2015‒03‒13
two papers chosen by
Jonas Holmström
Axventure AB

  1. Endogenous selection into single and coauthorships by surname initials in economics and management By David Ong; Ho Fai Chan; Benno Torgler; Yu (Alan) Yang
  2. The First Cut is the Deepest: Repeated Interactions of Coauthorship and Academic Productivity in Nobel Laureate Teams By Ho Fai Chan; Ali Sina Onder; Benno Torgler

  1. By: David Ong; Ho Fai Chan; Benno Torgler; Yu (Alan) Yang
    Abstract: Many prior studies suggest that alphabetic ordering confers professional advantages on authors with earlier surname initials. However, these studies assume that authors select into coauthorships without regard to the incentives identified. We consider the alternative and develop a model of endogenous selection into single and coauthorships for economics, which uses alphabetical ordering. We then tested it with authorship data from economics, with management (which does not use alphabetical ordering) as a benchmark. We predicted that lower "quality" authors with earlier surnames would be less desirable as coauthors, while higher quality authors with later surnames would have a lower desire to coauthor. Both types of authors are therefore more likely to single author. Furthermore, higher quality authors with earlier surnames should have more and better coauthoring options. Consistent with our predictions, we found citation ranks were increasing on surnames for single-authored works and decreasing for coauthored in economics, both absolutely and compared to management. Also as predicted, this effect is driven by lower-tier journals in which there is likely a thinner market for coauthors. Furthermore, comparing citation ranks of first-authors of alphabetical and nonalphabetical papers shows that the "larger share" effect of being first is dominated by the "smaller pie" effect of selection from second authors who will accept a smaller share.
    Keywords: alphabetic order effect, citations, coauthorships, endogenous teams, contests
    JEL: J01 J15 J44
    Date: 2015–03–04
  2. By: Ho Fai Chan; Ali Sina Onder; Benno Torgler
    Abstract: Despite much in-depth investigation of factors influencing this evolution in various scientific fields, our knowledge about how efficiency or creativity is linked to the longevity of collaborative relationships remains very limited. We explore what Nobel laureates' coauthorship patterns reveal about the nature of scientific collaborations looking at the intensity and success of scientific collaborations across fields and across laureates' collaborative lifecycles in physics, chemistry, and physiology/medicine. We find that more collaboration with the same researcher is actually no better for advancing creativity: publications produced early in a sequence of repeated collaborations with a given coauthor tend to be published better and cited more than papers that come later in the collaboration with the same coauthor. Thus, our results indicate that scientific collaboration involves conceptual complementarities that may erode over a sequence of repeated interactions.
    Keywords: Innovation; Scientific Collaboration; Team Formation; Nobel Laureates
    JEL: D20 O30
    Date: 2015–03–04

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