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The incentive properties of the Matthew Effect in the academic competition

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  • Nicolas Carayol

Abstract

This paper is concerned with the incentive properties of the Matthew Effect by which since Merton [1968] one is usually describing the various cumulative advantages that obviously affect academic competition. We introduce a model of sequential contests in which the agents that have initially produced more are the ones that will be further advantaged in that they are benefiting from intrinsically more productive research positions. We principally show that there is an optimal level of the Matthew effect and that this optimal dynamic bias is increasing with the risk of research activity while it is decreasing with the initial inequalities.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicolas Carayol, 2003. "The incentive properties of the Matthew Effect in the academic competition," Working Papers of BETA 2003-11, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
  • Handle: RePEc:ulp:sbbeta:2003-11
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    File URL: http://www.beta-umr7522.fr/productions/publications/2003/2003-11.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Paula E. Stephan & Sharon G. Levin, 1997. "The Critical Importance of Careers in Collaborative Scientific Research," Revue d'Économie Industrielle, Programme National Persée, vol. 79(1), pages 45-61.
    2. repec:adr:anecst:y:1998:i:49-50:p:06 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Carayol, Nicolas, 2003. "Objectives, agreements and matching in science-industry collaborations: reassembling the pieces of the puzzle," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 887-908, June.
    4. Margaret A. Meyer, 1991. "Learning from Coarse Information: Biased Contests and Career Profiles," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(1), pages 15-41.
    5. Levin, Sharon G & Stephan, Paula E, 1991. "Research Productivity over the Life Cycle: Evidence for Academic Scientists," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 114-132, March.
    6. Pierre-Andre Chiappori & Bernard Salanie & Julie Valentin, 1999. "Early Starters versus Late Beginners," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(4), pages 731-760, August.
    7. Stephan, Paula E., 2010. "The Economics of Science," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, Elsevier.
    8. Waldman, Michael, 1990. "Up-or-Out Contracts: A Signaling Perspective," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(2), pages 230-250, April.
    9. Aloysius Siow, 1991. "Are First Impressions Important in Academia?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(2), pages 236-255.
    10. Margaret A. Meyer, 1992. "Biased Contests and Moral Hazard: Implications for Career Profiles," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 25-26, pages 165-187.
    11. repec:adr:anecst:y:1998:i:49-50:p:07 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Hansen, W Lee & Weisbrod, Burton A & Strauss, Robert P, 1978. "Modeling the Earnings and Research Productivity of Academic Economists," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(4), pages 729-741, August.
    13. Cox, Raymond A K & Chung, Kee H, 1991. "Patterns of Research Output and Author Concentration in the Economics Literature," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(4), pages 740-747, November.
    14. Zivney, Terry L & Bertin, William J, 1992. " Publish or Perish: What the Competition Is Really Doing," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(1), pages 295-329, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Driouchi, Ahmed & Achehboune, Amale, 2015. "North-South Cooperation in Medical Education and Research: The European Union and South Mediterranean Economies," MPRA Paper 67345, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Paul David & Matthijs den Besten & Ralph Schroeder, 2008. "Will e-Science Be Open Science?," Discussion Papers 08-010, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, revised Jan 2009.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Matthew Effect; cumulative advantages; sequential contests; academic competition.;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C73 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Stochastic and Dynamic Games; Evolutionary Games
    • J41 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Labor Contracts
    • J44 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Professional Labor Markets and Occupations
    • J78 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Public Policy (including comparable worth)

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