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Does alphabetization significantly affect academic careers?

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  • Tolga Yuret

    (Istanbul Technical University)

Abstract

There is a considerable evidence that academicians who have surname initials that are placed early in the alphabet have advantage in publications, citations and other academic outcomes when they work in academic fields that order author names alphabetically. We analyze the distributions of the full professors’ surnames initial letters in nine academic fields. We are unable to find the expected effect of alphabetization on the academic careers. The academicians who have surname initials that are placed early in the alphabet are not more prevalent in alphabetic academic fields compared to non-alphabetic academic fields. The academicians who are at the top departments are not more likely to have surname initials that are placed early in the alphabet compared to the academicians who are at the lower ranked departments.

Suggested Citation

  • Tolga Yuret, 2016. "Does alphabetization significantly affect academic careers?," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 108(3), pages 1603-1619, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:scient:v:108:y:2016:i:3:d:10.1007_s11192-016-2058-3
    DOI: 10.1007/s11192-016-2058-3
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Tolga Yuret, 2015. "Interfield comparison of academic output by using department level data," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 105(3), pages 1653-1664, December.
    2. Kadel, Annke & Walter, Andreas, 2015. "Do scholars in Economics and Finance react to alphabetical discrimination?," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 14(C), pages 64-68.
    3. Levitt, Jonathan M. & Thelwall, Mike, 2013. "Alphabetization and the skewing of first authorship towards last names early in the alphabet," Journal of Informetrics, Elsevier, vol. 7(3), pages 575-582.
    4. Frandsen, Tove Faber & Nicolaisen, Jeppe, 2010. "What is in a name? Credit assignment practices in different disciplines," Journal of Informetrics, Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 608-617.
    5. C. Mirjam Van Praag & Bernard M.S. Van Praag, 2008. "The Benefits of Being Economics Professor A (rather than Z)," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 75(300), pages 782-796, November.
    6. Liran Einav & Leeat Yariv, 2006. "What's in a Surname? The Effects of Surname Initials on Academic Success," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 175-187, Winter.
    7. Waltman, Ludo, 2012. "An empirical analysis of the use of alphabetical authorship in scientific publishing," Journal of Informetrics, Elsevier, vol. 6(4), pages 700-711.
    8. Efthyvoulou, Georgios, 2008. "Alphabet Economics: The link between names and reputation," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 1266-1285, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ong, David & Chan, Ho Fai & Torgler, Benno & Yang, Yu (Alan), 2018. "Collaboration incentives: Endogenous selection into single and coauthorships by surname initial in economics and management," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 147(C), pages 41-57.

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