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Inside Job or Deep Impact? Using Extramural Citations to Assess Economic Scholarship

Author

Listed:
  • Joshua Angrist
  • Pierre Azoulay
  • Glenn Ellison
  • Ryan Hill
  • Susan Feng Lu

Abstract

Does academic economic research produce material of scientific value, or are academic economists writing only for clients and peers? Is economics scholarship uniquely insular? We address these questions by quantifying interactions between economics and other disciplines. Changes in the impact of economic scholarship are measured here by the way other disciplines cite us. We document a clear rise in the extramural influence of economic research, while also showing that economics is increasingly likely to reference other social sciences. A breakdown of extramural citations by economics fields shows broad field impact. Differentiating between theoretical and empirical papers classified using machine learning, we see that much of the rise in economics’ extramural influence reflects growth in citations to empirical work. This parallels a growing share of empirical cites within economics. At the same time, the disciplines of computer science and operations research are mostly influenced by economic theory.

Suggested Citation

  • Joshua Angrist & Pierre Azoulay & Glenn Ellison & Ryan Hill & Susan Feng Lu, 2017. "Inside Job or Deep Impact? Using Extramural Citations to Assess Economic Scholarship," NBER Working Papers 23698, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:23698
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Joshua D. Angrist & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 2010. "The Credibility Revolution in Empirical Economics: How Better Research Design Is Taking the Con out of Econometrics," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 24(2), pages 3-30, Spring.
    2. Matthew T. Panhans & John D. Singleton, 2015. "The Empirical Economist's Toolkit: From Models to Methods," Center for the History of Political Economy Working Paper Series 2015-3, Center for the History of Political Economy.
    3. Hall, Robert E, 1978. "Stochastic Implications of the Life Cycle-Permanent Income Hypothesis: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(6), pages 971-987, December.
    4. Roger E. Backhouse & Beatrice Cherrier, 2014. "Becoming Applied: The Transformation of Economics after 1970," Center for the History of Political Economy Working Paper Series 2014-15, Center for the History of Political Economy.
    5. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 2005. "Nominal Rigidities and the Dynamic Effects of a Shock to Monetary Policy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 1-45, February.
    6. Daniel S. Hamermesh, 2013. "Six Decades of Top Economics Publishing: Who and How?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(1), pages 162-172, March.
    7. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116.
    8. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-291, March.
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    10. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
    11. Michael A. Kelly & Stephen Bruestle, 2011. "Trend Of Subjects Published In Economics Journals 1969–2007," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 49(3), pages 658-673, July.
    12. Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James & Pakes, Ariel, 1995. "Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 841-890, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. John Gibson, 2018. "The Micro-Geography of Academic Research:How Distinctive is Economics?," Working Papers in Economics 18/03, University of Waikato.
    2. Battistin, Erich & Ovidi, Marco, 2017. "Rising Stars," IZA Discussion Papers 11198, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • A11 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Role of Economics; Role of Economists
    • A12 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines
    • A13 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Social Values
    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology
    • C18 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Methodolical Issues: General

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