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The Role of Connections in Academic Promotions

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  • Zinovyeva, Natalia
  • Bagues, Manuel F.

Abstract

This paper analyzes the role of connections in academic promotions. We exploit evidence from centralized evaluations in Spain, where evaluators are randomly as- signed to promotion committees. We nd that prior connections between candidates and evaluators have a dramatic impact on candidates' success. For instance, the presence of a co-author or an advisor in the committee is equivalent to a standard deviation increase in candidates' research output. The e ect of a weaker link, such as a member of candidate's doctoral thesis committee, is one fourth as large. The source of the premium enjoyed by connected candidates depends on the nature of their relationship with committee members. In the case of weak links, informa- tional gains tend to dominate evaluation biases. Candidates promoted by a weak link turn out to be more productive in the future relative to other promoted candi- dates. However, consistently with the potential existence of favoritism, candidates promoted by a strong connection exhibit a signi cantly worse research record both before and after the evaluation.

Suggested Citation

  • Zinovyeva, Natalia & Bagues, Manuel F., 2012. "The Role of Connections in Academic Promotions," INDEM - Working Paper Business Economic Series id-12-02, Instituto para el Desarrollo Empresarial (INDEM).
  • Handle: RePEc:cte:idrepe:id-12-02
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ruben Durante & Giovanna Labartino & Roberto Perotti, 2011. "Academic Dynasties: Decentralization and Familism in the Italian Academia," NBER Working Papers 17572, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Alexander Oettl, 2012. "Reconceptualizing Stars: Scientist Helpfulness and Peer Performance," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 58(6), pages 1122-1140, June.
    3. Natalia Zinovyeva & Manuel F. Bagues, 2010. "Does gender matter for academic promotion? Evidence from a randomized natural experiment," Working Papers 2010-15, FEDEA.
    4. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Linnemer, Laurent & Visser, Michael, 2008. "Publish or peer-rich? The role of skills and networks in hiring economics professors," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 423-441, June.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Manuel Bagues & Mauro Sylos-Labini & Natalia Zinovyeva, 2017. "Does the Gender Composition of Scientific Committees Matter?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 1207-1238.
    2. Abramo, Giovanni & D’Angelo, Ciriaco Andrea & Rosati, Francesco, 2016. "A methodology to measure the effectiveness of academic recruitment and turnover," Journal of Informetrics, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 31-42.
    3. Clément Bosquet & Pierre-Philippe Combes & Cecilia García-Peñalosa, 2013. "Gender and Competition: Evidence from Academic Promotions in France," Working Papers halshs-00875204, HAL.
    4. D. Checchi & S. Cicognani & N. Kulic, 2015. "Gender quotas or girls’ networks? Towards an understanding of recruitment in the research profession in Italy," Working Papers wp1047, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
    5. Estrada, Ricardo, 2015. "Rules Rather than Discretion: Teacher Hiring and Rent Extraction," Economics Working Papers MWP2015/14, European University Institute.
    6. Bosquet, Clément & Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Garcia-Penalosa, Cecilia, 2013. "Gender and competition: evidence from academic promotions in France," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 58350, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    7. Clément Bosquet & Pierre-Philippe Combes, 2013. "Are academics who publish more also more cited? Individual determinants of publication and citation records," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, pages 831-857.
    8. Checchi, Daniele & De Poli, Silvia & Rettore, Enrico, 2017. "Does Random Selection of Commissioners Improve the Quality of Selected Candidates? An Investigation in the Italian Academia," IZA Discussion Papers 10844, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Giovanni Abramo & Ciriaco D’Angelo, 2015. "An assessment of the first “scientific habilitation” for university appointments in Italy," Economia Politica: Journal of Analytical and Institutional Economics, Springer;Fondazione Edison, vol. 32(3), pages 329-357, December.
    10. Gianni De Fraja & Giovanni Facchini & John Gathergood, 2016. "How Much Is That Star in the Window? Professorial Salaries and Research Performance in UK Universities," Discussion Papers 2016-13, University of Nottingham, GEP.
    11. Olivier Godechot, 2016. "The Chance of Influence: A Natural Experiment on the Role of Social Capital in Faculty Recruitment," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/37ufknmfv39, Sciences Po.
    12. Fernandez-Zubieta, Ana & Geuna, Aldo & Lawson, Cornelia, 2015. "What do We Know of the Mobility of Research Scientists and of its Impact on Scientific Production," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201522, University of Turin.
    13. Yann Bramoull'e & Kenan Huremovi'c, 2017. "Promotion through Connections: Favors or Information?," Papers 1708.07723, arXiv.org.
    14. De Paola, Maria & Ponzo, Michela & Scoppa, Vincenzo, 2016. "Are Men Given Priority for Top Jobs? Investigating the Glass Ceiling in the Italian Academia," IZA Discussion Papers 9658, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    15. Bosquet, Clément & Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Garcia-Penalosa, Cecilia, 2013. "Gender and competition: evidence from academic promotions in France," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 58350, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    16. Hottenrott, Hanna & Lawson, Cornelia, 2014. "Flying the nest: How the home department shapes researchers’ career paths," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio 201409, University of Turin.
    17. Giovanni Abramo & Ciriaco Andrea D’Angelo & Francesco Rosati, 2016. "Gender bias in academic recruitment," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 106(1), pages 119-141, January.
    18. Battistin, Erich & Ovidi, Marco, 2017. "Rising Stars," IZA Discussion Papers 11198, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    19. Anne Boring, 2015. "Gender Biases in student evaluations of teachers," Documents de Travail de l'OFCE 2015-13, Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE).
    20. Raymond Fisman & Jing Shi & Yongxiang Wang & Rong Xu, 2017. "Social Ties and Favoritism in Chinese Science," NBER Working Papers 23130, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    21. Thomas Breda & Son Thierry Ly, 2015. "Professors in Core Science Fields Are Not Always Biased against Women: Evidence from France," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, pages 53-75.
    22. Manuel Bagues & Mauro Sylos-Labini & Natalia Zinovyeva, 2017. "A Walk on the Wild Side: 'Predatory' Journals and Information Asymmetries in Scientific Evaluations," LEM Papers Series 2017/01, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    23. Baruffaldi, Stefano & Visentin, Fabiana & Conti, Annamaria, 2016. "The productivity of science & engineering PhD students hired from supervisors’ networks," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(4), pages 785-796.
    24. repec:eee:infome:v:11:y:2017:i:2:p:435-454 is not listed on IDEAS
    25. Clément Bosquet & Pierre-Philippe Combes & Cecila Garcia-Penalosa, 2013. "Gender and Competition: Evidence from Academic Promotions in France," SERC Discussion Papers 0147, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Academic promotion;

    JEL classification:

    • J44 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Professional Labor Markets and Occupations
    • M51 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Firm Employment Decisions; Promotions

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