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Is Scholarly Refereeing Productive (at the Margin)?

Author

Listed:
  • Hadavand, Aboozar

    (Johns Hopkins University)

  • Hamermesh, Daniel S.

    () (Barnard College)

  • Wilson, Wesley W.

    (University of Oregon)

Abstract

In economics many articles are subjected to multiple rounds of refereeing at the same journal, which generates time costs of referees alone of at least $50 million. This process leads to remarkably longer publication lags than in other social sciences. We examine whether repeated refereeing produces any benefits, using an experiment at one journal that allows authors to submit under an accept/reject (fast-track or not) or the usual regime. We evaluate the scholarly impacts of articles by their subsequent citation histories, holding constant their sub-fields, authors' demographics and prior citations, and other characteristics. There is no payoff to refereeing beyond the first round and no difference between accept/reject articles and others. This result holds accounting for authors' selectivity into the two regimes, which we model formally to generate an empirical selection equation. This latter is used to provide instrumental estimates of the effect of each regime on scholarly impact.

Suggested Citation

  • Hadavand, Aboozar & Hamermesh, Daniel S. & Wilson, Wesley W., 2019. "Is Scholarly Refereeing Productive (at the Margin)?," IZA Discussion Papers 12866, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp12866
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Daniel S. Hamermesh, 1994. "Facts and Myths about Refereeing," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(1), pages 153-163, Winter.
    2. Alexandre Mas & Amanda Pallais, 2019. "Labor Supply and the Value of Non-work Time: Experimental Estimates from the Field," American Economic Review: Insights, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 111-126, June.
    3. David N. Laband, 1990. "Is There Value-Added from the Review Process in Economics?: Preliminary Evidence from Authors," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 341-352.
    4. 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.
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    Cited by:

    1. Stephan Puehringer & Johanna Rath & Teresa Griesebner, 2020. "The political economy of academic publishing: On the commodification of a public good," ICAE Working Papers 121, Johannes Kepler University, Institute for Comprehensive Analysis of the Economy.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    publishing; refereeing; citations;

    JEL classification:

    • A1 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics
    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education

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