nep-sog New Economics Papers
on Sociology of Economics
Issue of 2020‒06‒15
two papers chosen by
Jonas Holmström
Axventure AB

  1. Does Economics Make You Sexist By Paredes, Valentina A.; Paserman, M. Daniele; Pino, Francisco J.
  2. Off the beaten path: What drives scientists’ entry into new fields? By Stijn Kelchtermans; Daniel Neicu; Reinhilde Veugelers

  1. By: Paredes, Valentina A.; Paserman, M. Daniele; Pino, Francisco J.
    Abstract: Recent research has highlighted unequal treatment for women in academic economics along several different dimensions, including promotion, hiring, credit for co-authorship, and standards for publication in professional journals. Can the source of these differences lie in biases against women that are pervasive in the discipline, even among students in the earliest stages of their training? In this paper, we provide evidence on the importance of explicit and implicit biases against women among students in economics relative to other fields. We conducted a large scale survey among undergraduate students in Chilean universities, among both entering first-year students and students in years 2 and above. On a wide battery of measures, economics students are more biased than students in other fields. Economics students are somewhat more biased already upon entry, before exposure to any economics classes. The gap is more pronounced among students in years 2 and above, in particular for male students. We also find an increase in bias in a sample of students that we follow longitudinally. Differences in political ideology explain essentially all the gap at entry, but none of the increase in the gap with exposure. Exposure to female students and faculty attenuates some of the bias.
    Keywords: discrimination; implicit biases; sociology of economics
    JEL: A13 A14 A22 J16 J71
    Date: 2020–05
  2. By: Stijn Kelchtermans; Daniel Neicu; Reinhilde Veugelers
    Abstract: Given that prestige sits at the core of the scientific reward system and that venturing into unknown territory carries substantial risk, scientists don’t take the decision to enter a new field lightly. This paper analyses the individual and contextual factors associated with entry into new-to-the-researcher fields of research. Using a panel of researchers in biomedical sciences and engineering from a large European research university, we find that productivity affects new field entry as such, but is not associated with entry into fields that are very distant to one’s current expertise. Such ‘long jumps’ are more likely to be made by talented, rather than merely productive researchers. Scientists in more senior ranks, with larger co-author networks and collaborating with PhD students are more likely to enter fields but these factors don’t represent an additional push to enter very remote fields. Finally, accounting for its endogeneity, we find that funding does not make new field entry more likely but, conditional on entry supports ‘long jumps’.
    Keywords: economics of science, new field entry, scientific funding
    Date: 2020–05–18

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