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Search and Research: The influence of editorial boards on journals' quality

  • Damien Besancenot

    ()

    (CEPN - Centre d'Economie de l'Université de Paris Nord (ancienne affiliation) - Université Paris XIII - Paris Nord - CNRS : UMR7115)

  • Joao Faria

    ()

    (IPED - Institute for Policy and Economic Development - University of Texas-El Paso)

  • Kim Huynh

    ()

    (LEM - Laboratoire d'Économie Moderne - Université Paris II - Panthéon-Assas : EA4442)

This paper considers the search for the best papers by the editors of an academic journal. Editors' search is sequential. At each period, each editor receives one submission from a researcher and has to decide if she accepts or rejects the paper. The editorial board is heterogeneous, some editors being more demanding than others. On the academic side, researchers choose the quality level of their papers in order to maximize their utility function taking as given the composition of the editorial board. We show that three equilibria may occur. When the number of the less demanding editors is high, or if the editors exhibit great differences in their demand for quality, the journal will attract fewer submissions, publish a small number of papers and these papers will be of low quality. When the editorial board is composed by a homogeneous set of very demanding editors, the journal will publish a high number of high quality papers. For some intermediate structure of the board, a situation of multiple equilibria allows a hybrid equilibrium to exist in which the journal receives both good and bad papers. The long run and welfare implications of these equilibria are analyzed.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series CEPN Working Papers with number halshs-00370785.

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Date of creation: 25 Mar 2009
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Handle: RePEc:hal:cepnwp:halshs-00370785
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  1. Besancenot, Damien & Vranceanu, Radu, 2008. "Can incentives for research harm research? A business schools' tale," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 1248-1265, June.
  2. Yohe, Gary W, 1980. "Current Publication Lags in Economics Journals," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 18(3), pages 1050-55, September.
  3. Glenn Ellison, 2002. "The Slowdown of the Economics Publishing Process," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(5), pages 947-993, October.
  4. 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.
  5. Stigler, George J & Stigler, Stephen M & Friedland, Claire, 1995. "The Journals of Economics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(2), pages 331-59, April.
  6. Oswald, Andrew J., 2006. "An Examination of the Reliability of Prestigious Scholarly Journals: Evidence and Implications for Decision-makers," IZA Discussion Papers 2070, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Diamond, Peter, 1987. "Consumer Differences and Prices in a Search Model," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 102(2), pages 429-36, May.
  8. M. Grubb, 2003. "Editorial," Climate Policy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 3(3), pages 189-190, September.
  9. Rajeev K. Goel, 2006. "The Game Academics Play: Comment," Bulletin of Economic Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(1), pages 19-23, 01.
  10. Joao Ricardo Faria, 2000. "The Game Academics Play: Editors Versus Authors," Working Paper Series 105, Finance Discipline Group, UTS Business School, University of Technology, Sydney.
  11. Laband, David N, 1990. "Is There Value-Added from the Review Process in Economics? Preliminary Evidence from Authors," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(2), pages 341-52, May.
  12. Stuart Macdonald & Jacqueline Kam, 2007. "Ring a Ring o' Roses: Quality Journals and Gamesmanship in Management Studies," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(4), pages 640-655, 06.
  13. Rajeev K. Goel & Jo�o Ricardo Faria, 2007. "Proliferation Of Academic Journals: Effects On Research Quantity And Quality," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(4), pages 536-549, November.
  14. Joshua S. Gans & George B. Shepherd, 1994. "How Are the Mighty Fallen: Rejected Classic Articles by Leading Economists," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(1), pages 165-179, Winter.
  15. Marshall H. Medoff, 2003. "Editorial Favoritism in Economics?," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 70(2), pages 425-434, October.
  16. Laband, David N & Piette, Michael J, 1994. "Favoritism versus Search for Good Papers: Empirical Evidence Regarding the Behavior of Journal Editors," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(1), pages 194-203, February.
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