Tools or Toys? The Impact of High Technology on Scholarly Productivity
We examine the impact of communication technology on scholarly productivity by considering patterns of coauthored economics articles. Using articles in three major economics journals from 1970--79 and 1992--96, we find (1) sharp growth from distant coauthorships (authors not in the same metropolitan area prior to publication), as the theory predicts, and, contrary to theory, (2) lower productivity of distant than close-coauthored works and no decline in their relative disadvantage. These findings are reconciled by noting that high technology has aspects of a consumer good. The relative productivity of solo-authored articles has decreased, perhaps explaining the secular increase in coauthorship. Copyright 2002, Oxford University Press.
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Volume (Year): 40 (2002)
Issue (Month): 4 (October)
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