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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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    Cited by:

    1. Mueller-Langer, Frank & Fecher, Benedikt & Harhoff, Dietmar & Wagner, Gert G., 2019. "Replication studies in economics—How many and which papers are chosen for replication, and why?," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 62-83.
    2. Lutz Bornmann & Klaus Wohlrabe, 2019. "Normalisation of citation impact in economics," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 120(2), pages 841-884, August.
    3. John Gibson, 2018. "The Micro-Geography of Academic Research:How Distinctive is Economics?," Working Papers in Economics 18/03, University of Waikato.
    4. Mark J. McCabe & Frank Mueller-Langer, 2019. "Does Data Disclosure Increase Citations? Empirical Evidence from a Natural Experiment in Leading Economics Journals," JRC Working Papers on Digital Economy 2019-02, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).
    5. Olivér Kovács, 2019. "Grounding Complexity Economics in Framing Modern Governance," Acta Oeconomica, Akadémiai Kiadó, Hungary, vol. 69(4), pages 571-594, December.
    6. Battistin, Erich & Ovidi, Marco, 2017. "Rising Stars," IZA Discussion Papers 11198, Institute of Labor Economics (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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