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Emergent structures in faculty hiring networks and the effects of mobility on academic performance

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  • Robin Cowan
  • Giulia Rossello

Abstract

This paper is about the South African job market for PhDs. PhD to first job mobility involves the preferences of both the hiring institution and the candidate. Both want to make the best choice and here institutional prestige plays a crucial role. A university’s prestige is an emergent property of the hiring interactions, so we use a network perspective to measure it. Using this emergent ordering, we compare the subsequent scientific performance of scholars with different changes in the prestige hierarchy. We ask how movements between universities of different prestige from PhD to first job correlates with academic performance. We use data of South African scholars from 1970 to 2004 and we find that those who make large movements in terms of prestige have lower research ratings than those wo do not. Further, those with higher prestige PhD or first job have high research ratings throughout their careers.

Suggested Citation

  • Robin Cowan & Giulia Rossello, 2017. "Emergent structures in faculty hiring networks and the effects of mobility on academic performance," Working Papers of BETA 2017-27, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
  • Handle: RePEc:ulp:sbbeta:2017-27
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Conti, Annamaria & Visentin, Fabiana, 2015. "A revealed preference analysis of PhD students’ choices over employment outcomes," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(10), pages 1931-1947.
    2. Araki, Shota & Kawaguchi, Daiji & Onozuka, Yuki, 2016. "University prestige, performance evaluation, and promotion: Estimating the employer learning model using personnel datasets," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 135-148.
    3. Sekhon, Jasjeet S., 2011. "Multivariate and Propensity Score Matching Software with Automated Balance Optimization: The Matching package for R," Journal of Statistical Software, Foundation for Open Access Statistics, vol. 42(i07).
    4. Barnard, H. & Cowan, R. & Müller, M., 2012. "Global excellence at the expense of local diffusion, or a bridge between two worlds? Research in science and technology in the developing world," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(4), pages 756-769.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Academia; South Africa; faculty hiring network; institutional prestige; institutional stratification; scholars research performance; university system; matched pair analysis.;

    JEL classification:

    • D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • O3 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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