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Are leading papers of better quality? Evidence from a natural experiment

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Author Info

  • Tom Coupé

    ()
    (Kyiv School of Economics and Kyiv Economics Institute)

  • Victor Ginsburgh

    (ECARES, Université Libre de Bruxelles and CORE, Université Catholique de Louvain)

  • Abdul Noury

    (CORE, Université Catholique de Louvain)

Abstract

Leading papers in a journal’s issue attract, on average, more citations than those that follow. It is, however, difficult to assess whether they are of better quality (as is often suggested), or whether this happens just because they appear first in an issue. We make use of a natural experiment that was carried out by a journal in which papers are randomly ordered in some issues, while this order is not random in others. We show that leading papers in randomly ordered issues also attract more citations, which casts some doubt on whether, in general, leading papers are of higher quality.

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File URL: http://repec.kse.org.ua/pdf/KSE_dp9.pdf
File Function: First version, Jun 2008
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Kyiv School of Economics in its series Discussion Papers with number 9.

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Date of creation: Jun 2008
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Handle: RePEc:kse:dpaper:9

Note: Under review in Oxford Economic Papers
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References

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  1. William J. Moore & Robert J. Newman & Peter J. Sloane & Jeremy D. Steely, . "Productivity Effects of Research Assessment Exercises," Departmental Working Papers 2002-15, Department of Economics, Louisiana State University.
  2. Victor A. Ginsburgh & Jan C. van Ours, 2003. "Expert Opinion and Compensation: Evidence from a Musical Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 289-296, March.
  3. Oswald, Andrew J., 2006. "An Examination of the Reliability of Prestigious Scholarly Journals: Evidence and Implications for Decision-makers," IZA Discussion Papers 2070, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Sofronis Clerides & Panos Pashardes & Alexandros Polycarpou, 2011. "Peer Review vs Metric‐based Assessment: Testing for Bias in the RAE Ratings of UK Economics Departments," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 78(311), pages 565-583, 07.
  5. Ayres, Ian & Vars, Fredrick E, 2000. "Determinants of Citations to Articles in Elite Law Reviews," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(1), pages 427-50, January.
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Citations

Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Lead papers are not particularly better
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2009-03-09 12:21:00

RePEc Biblio mentions

As found on the RePEc Biblio, the curated bibliography for Economics:
  1. > Economics Profession > Ranking in Economics > Ranking Articles and Papers
Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
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Cited by:
  1. Maria Rosaria Carillo & Erasmo Papagni & Alessandro Sapio, 2012. "Do collaborations enhance the high-quality output of scientific institutions? Evidence from the Italian Research Assessment Exercise (2001-2003)," Discussion Papers 4_2012, CRISEI, University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
  2. Oswald, Andrew J., 2008. "Can We Test for Bias in Scientific Peer-Review?," IZA Discussion Papers 3665, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Ho Fai Chan & Bruno S. Frey & Jana Gallus & Benno Torgler, 2013. "Does the John Bates Clark Medal Boost Subsequent Productivity and Citation Success?," CESifo Working Paper Series 4419, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Carillo, Maria Rosaria & Papagni, Erasmo & Sapio, Alessandro, 2013. "Do collaborations enhance the high-quality output of scientific institutions? Evidence from the Italian Research Assessment Exercise," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 25-36.
  5. Novarese, Marco & Wilson, Chris M., 2013. "Being in the Right Place: A Natural Field Experiment on List Position and Consumer Choice," MPRA Paper 48074, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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  1. Economic Logic blog

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