Prizes and Productivity: How Winning the Fields Medal Affects Scientific Output
AbstractKnowledge generation is key to economic growth, and scientific prizes are designed to encourage it. But how does winning a prestigious prize affect future output? We compare the productivity of Fields medalists (winners of the top mathematics prize) to that of similarly brilliant contenders. The two groups have similar publication rates until the award year, after which the winners’ productivity declines. The medalists begin to “play the field,” studying unfamiliar topics at the expense of writing papers. It appears that tournaments can have large post-prize effects on the effort allocation of knowledge producers.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 19445.
Date of creation: Sep 2013
Date of revision:
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Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
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Other versions of this item:
- Kirk B. Doran & George J. Borjas, 2013. "Prizes and Productivity- How Winning the Fields Medal Affects Scientific Output," Working Papers 022, University of Notre Dame, Department of Economics, revised Aug 2013.
- J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
- J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
- J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods
- O31 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-09-26 (All new papers)
- NEP-EFF-2013-09-26 (Efficiency & Productivity)
- NEP-HRM-2013-09-26 (Human Capital & Human Resource Management)
- NEP-LAB-2013-09-26 (Labour Economics)
- NEP-LMA-2013-09-26 (Labor Markets - Supply, Demand, & Wages)
- NEP-SOG-2013-09-26 (Sociology of Economics)
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