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Attention and the art of scientific publishing

  • Arjo Klamer
  • Hendrik van Dalen

As so many other activities nowadays, modern science revolves around the competition for attention. Unlike in so many other attention games, in science those who seek attention are more or less the same people who are giving it. An important characteristic is the skewness of the distribution of scientific attention. We discuss the effect these characteristics have on scientific institutions. An important thesis of ours is that scientists converge in clusters of likeminded scientists. Given the character of scientific organization and communication we expect that the digitalization of scientific communication will not affect the basic scientific institutions as the principles upon which the Internet functions coincide more or less with the way science functions. However, violation of these principles can in principle disrupt science and fundamentally change its character. Diversity, the key element of scientific conversation, may be destroyed.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Journal of Economic Methodology.

Volume (Year): 9 (2001)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 289-315

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Handle: RePEc:taf:jecmet:v:9:y:2001:i:3:p:289-315
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  1. Aloysius Siow, 1991. "Are First Impressions Important in Academia?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(2), pages 236-255.
  2. Hendrik P. Dalen & Kène Henkens, 1999. "How Influential Are Demography Journals?," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 25(2), pages 229-251.
  3. David M. Levy, 1988. "The Market for Fame and Fortune," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 20(4), pages 615-625, Winter.
  4. Hendrik P. van Dalen, 1997. "The Golden Age of Nobel Economists," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 97-120/1, Tinbergen Institute.
  5. Hodgson, Geoffrey M & Rothman, Harry, 1999. "The Editors and Authors of Economics Journals: A Case of Institutional Oligopoly?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(453), pages F165-86, February.
  6. Rosen, Sherwin, 1981. "The Economics of Superstars," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 845-58, December.
  7. Josh Lerner & Jean Triole, 2000. "The Simple Economics of Open Source," NBER Working Papers 7600, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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