nep-sog New Economics Papers
on Sociology of Economics
Issue of 2015‒04‒02
eleven 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. Ranking economics journals using data from a national research evaluation exercise By Arne Risa Hole
  3. Reviewing journal papers effectively, efficiently and fairly By Pannell, David
  4. UWA Discussion Papers in Economics: The First 750 By Joshua Bon
  5. The First Cut is the Deepest: Repeated Interactions of Coauthorship and Academic Productivity in Nobel Laureate Teams By Ho Fai Chan; Ali Sina Önder; Benno Torgler
  6. Wissenschaft im digitalen Wandel: Demokratisierung von Wissensproduktion und Wissensrezeption? By Dickel, Sascha; Franzen, Martina
  7. Research portfolios in science policy: moving from financial returns to societal benefits By Matthew L. Wallace; Ismael Rafols
  8. Measuring Teaching Quality in Higher Education : Assessing the Problem of Selection Bias in Course Evaluations By Anna Salomons; Maarten Goos
  9. Journal Portfolio Analysis for Countries, Cities, and Organizations: Maps and Comparisons? By Loet Leydesdorff; Gaston Heimeriks; Daniele Rotolo
  10. Software piracy and scientific publications: knowledge economy evidence from Africa By Asongu, Simplice
  11. University Image Audit By Greta Druteikiene

  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: 2015–02
  2. By: Arne Risa Hole (Department of Economics, University of Sheffield)
    Abstract: This paper describes an algorithm for creating a ranking of economics journals using data from the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework (REF) exercise. The ranking generated by the algorithm can be viewed as a measure of the average quality of the papers published in the journal, as judged by the REF Economics and Econometrics sub-panel, based on the outputs submitted to the REF.
    Keywords: Journal ranking, Research Excellence Framework
    JEL: A1
    Date: 2015–03
  3. By: Pannell, David
    Abstract: Paper presented at the 59th Conference of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society (AARES), Rotorua, 10-13 February 2015
    Keywords: publication, research, refereeing, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods, A10, B40,
    Date: 2015–03–22
  4. By: Joshua Bon (University of Western Australia)
    Abstract: The UWA Economics Discussion Paper Series has, for the past 33 years, provided a platform for economic research, collaboration amongst academic economists, and the debate of policy issues. More than 750 papers have been published since the inception of the Series in 1980. The Discipline’s first 750 papers, the focus of this paper, contain a rich archive of economic thought generated by the economists and affiliates of UWA over these years. Further, the series represents a valuable store of data on the authors, their topics and subsequent publications owing to the Series. This paper explores the Economics Discussion Paper Series from a number of perspectives. The aim being firstly, to better record the legacy of the Series and secondly, provide some tools for future studies on collections of academic papers.
    Date: 2014
  5. By: Ho Fai Chan; Ali Sina Önder; 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
  6. By: Dickel, Sascha; Franzen, Martina
    Abstract: Die moderne Wissenschaft konstituierte sich im 19. Jahrhundert als eine spezifische Form sozialer Praxis - ausgeübt von zertifizierten Experten, die ihre Forschungsarbeit in ausgewiesenen institutionellen (Labor-) Settings betreiben, in fachspezifischen Medien miteinander kommunizieren und die Qualität ihrer Leistungen untereinander bewerten. In der differenzierungstheoretischen Lesart steht die Wissenschaft somit prototypisch für ein autonomes System, das eine soziale Distanz zur Gesellschaft unterhält. Im Zuge des digitalen Wandels, so die These dieses Beitrags, zeichnen sich jedoch Konturen neuer wissenschaftlicher Inklusionsprofile ab, die erstens auf ein alternatives Publikum der Wissenschaft (Science Recipient) und zweitens auf Formen der Inklusion von Nicht-Wissenschaftlern in die wissenschaftliche Wissensproduktion hinweisen (Citizen Scientist).
    Abstract: Modern science emerged in the 19th century as a specific form of social practice - performed by certified experts who carry out their research in designated institutional (laboratory) settings, communicate in subject-specific med ia and mutually evaluate the merits of scientific output. From the perspective of differentiation theory, science is thus a prototype of an autonomous system that maintains a social distance to the rest of society. The thesis of this paper, however, is that in the course of the digital revolution, the contours of new scientific inclusion profiles are beginning to become apparent. These refer firstly to an alternative science public (science recipients) and secondly to modes of the inclusion of non-scientists into scientific knowledge production (citizen scientists).
    Date: 2015
  7. By: Matthew L. Wallace (Ingenio (CSIC-UPV),Universitat Politècnica de València, València); Ismael Rafols (Ingenio (CSIC-UPV),Universitat Politècnica de València, València; SPRU, University of Sussex, UK; Observatoire des Sciences et Téchniques (HCERES-OST), Paris)
    Abstract: Funding agencies and large public scientific institutions are increasingly using the term “research portfolio” as a means of characterising their research. While portfolios have long been used as a heuristic for managing corporate R&D (i.e., R&D aimed at gaining tangible economic benefits), they remain ill-defined in a science policy context where research is aimed at achieving societal outcomes. In this article we analyze the discursive uses of the term “research portfolio” and propose some general considerations for their application in science policy. We explore the use of the term in private R&D and related scholarly literature in existing science policy practices, and seek insight in relevant literature in science policy scholarship. While the financial analogy can in some instances be instructive, a simple transposition from the world of finance or of corporate R&D to public research is problematic. However, we do identify potentially fruitful uses of portfolio analysis in science policy. In particular, our review suggests that the concept of research portfolio can indeed be a useful analytical instrument for tackling complex societal challenges. Specifically, the strands of scholarship identified suggest that the use of research portfolio should: i) recognize the diversity of research lines relevant for a given societal challenge, given the uncertainty and ambiguity of research outcomes; ii) examine the relationships between research options of a portfolio and the expected societal outcomes; and iii) adopt a systemic perspective to research portfolios – i.e., examine a portfolio as a functional whole, rather than as the sum of the its parts. We argue that with these considerations, portfolio-driven approaches may foster social inclusion in science policy decisions, help deliberation between “alternative” portfolios to tackle complex societal challenges, as well as promote cost-effectiveness and transparency.
    Keywords: research portfolio, prioritisation, research landscape, societal challenges
    Date: 2015–03
  8. By: Anna Salomons; Maarten Goos
    Abstract: Student evaluations of teaching are widely used to measure teaching quality and compare it across different courses, teachers, departments and institutions: as such, they are of increasing importance for teacher promotion decisions as well as student course selection. However, the response on course evaluations is rarely perfect, rendering such uses unwarranted if students who participate in the evaluation are not randomly selected: this paper is the first to investigate this issue. We quantify the direction and size of selection on both observable and unobservable characteristics for a large European university where course evaluation response rates differ across courses. Our results suggest course evaluations are upward biased, and that this bias mostly derives from selection on characteristics unlikely to be observed by the typical university administrator. Correcting for selection bias has sizable effects on both scores in any given course and the evaluation-based ranking of different courses.
    Keywords: Educational economics, Student evaluations of teaching, Education quality, Sample selection
    Date: 2014
  9. By: Loet Leydesdorff (Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR), University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Department of Innovation Studies, Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands); Gaston Heimeriks (Department of Innovation Studies, Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands); Daniele Rotolo (SPRU — Science Policy Research Unit, University of Sussex, Brighton, United Kingdom)
    Abstract: Using Web-of-Science data, portfolio analysis in terms of journal coverage can be projected on a base map for units of analysis such as countries, cities, universities, and firms. The units of analysis under study can be compared statistically across the 10,000+ journals. The interdisciplinarity of the portfolios is measured using Rao-Stirling diversity or the 2D3 measure proposed by Zhang et al. (2015). At the country level we find regional differentiation (e.g., Latin-American or Asian countries), but also a major divide between advanced and less-developed countries. Israel and Israeli cities outperform other nations and cities in terms of diversity. Universities appear to be specifically related to firms when a number of these units are exploratively compared. The instrument is relatively simple and straightforward, and one can generalize the application to any document set retrieved from the Web-of-Science (WoS). Further instruction is provided online at
    Keywords: map; journal; portfolio; firm; university; city; country.
    Date: 2015–03
  10. By: Asongu, Simplice
    Abstract: This paper is an extension of the debate on the nexus between the strength of IPRs and prospects for knowledge economy. It assesses the relationships between software piracy and scientific publications in African countries for which data is available. The findings which reveal a positive nexus are broadly consistent with the school of thought postulating that, the East Asian miracle has been largely due to weaker IPRs regimes at the early stages of development. As a policy implication, less stringent IPRs regimes on scientific-related software (at least in the short-run) will substantially boost contributions to and dissemination of knowledge through scientific and technical publications in Africa. IPRs laws (treaties) on scientific-oriented software should be strengthened in tandem with progress in: scientific and technical publications and; knowledge spillovers essential for economic growth and development. More policy implications are discussed.
    Keywords: Publications; Piracy; Intellectual property rights; Governance; Africa
    JEL: A20 F42 O34 O38 O55
    Date: 2014–08–11
  11. By: Greta Druteikiene (Vilnius University)
    Abstract: The main purpose of this article is to analyse the university ranking methodologies, discusses the ways how a university may explore its identity, image and reputation, and what steps should be made upon accomplishing the self-assessment process.In order to create a maximally positive image that helps the university to achieve a competitive advantage and increase its value, the audit of the university image must be carried out. This process must be consistent and should include the evaluation of both internal and external variables. The university image audit should be regarded as part of the university strategic planning, because only consistent studies can provide information on how the university is accepted by different impact groups and what should be the trends of its creation process. Before talking about the university image audit, the university rating methodologies should be presented as they specifically provide information about how the university is seen as compared to other higher schools. The first comparative evaluation of higher schools was performed in the United States in 1983 when the journal “U. S. News & World Report†published the first rating table of universities and colleges of the United States. Today, university rankings are drawn up and published in more than 15 countries including the USA, UK, Australia, Canada, China, Germany, Hong Kong, Nigeria, Italy, Japan, Spain, Russia and Poland. In Lithuania, no generally accepted methodology of university ranking has been created so far. On the other hand, university ranking results are only one way to find out how a university is accepted and evaluated. Analysis of the theoretical literature, empirical studies and surveys conducted by market research and consulting companies allows suggesting that information for the holistic assessment of university image may be obtained by studying its identity, image and reputation.
    Keywords: University image, reputation, audit
    Date: 2014–10

This nep-sog issue is ©2015 by Jonas Holmström. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
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