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Economists, Incentives, Judgment, and Empirical Work

  • Colander, David C.

This paper asks the question: Why has the ?general-to-specific? cointegrated VAR approach as developed in Europe had only limited success in the US as a tool for doing empirical macroeconomics, where what might be called a ?theory comes first? approach dominates? The reason this paper highlights is the incompatibility of the European approach with the US focus on the journal publication metric for advancement. Specifically, the European ?general-to specific? cointegrated VAR approach requires researcher judgment to be part of the analysis, and the US focus on a journal publication metric discourages such research methods. The US ?theory comes first? approach fits much better with the journal publication metric.

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Paper provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy in its series Economics Discussion Papers with number 2008-12.

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Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:zbw:ifwedp:7213
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  1. Colander, David, 1989. "Research on the Economics Profession," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 137-48, Fall.
  2. Deirdre N. McCloskey & Stephen T. Ziliak, 1996. "The Standard Error of Regressions," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(1), pages 97-114, March.
  3. Peter N. Ireland, 1999. "A Method for Taking Models to the Data," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 421, Boston College Department of Economics.
  4. Terry Plum & David Colander, 2004. "Efficiency, Journal Publishing and Scholarly Research - A Discussion Paper," Middlebury College Working Paper Series 0414, Middlebury College, Department of Economics.
  5. Bruno S. Frey & Reiner Eichenberger, 1993. "American and European Economics and Economists," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(4), pages 185-193, Fall.
  6. Julia Campos & Neil R. Ericsson & David F. Hendry, 2005. "General-to-specific modeling: an overview and selected bibliography," International Finance Discussion Papers 838, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  7. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521362337 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Leamer, Edward E, 1983. "Let's Take the Con Out of Econometrics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 31-43, March.
  9. Colander, David, 2003. "The Aging of an Economist," Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Cambridge University Press, vol. 25(02), pages 157-176, June.
  10. Cooley, Thomas F & LeRoy, Stephen F, 1981. "Identification and Estimation of Money Demand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 825-44, December.
  11. Kirman, Alan & Dahl, Mogens, 1994. "Economic research in Europe," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(3-4), pages 505-522, April.
  12. Dewald, William G & Thursby, Jerry G & Anderson, Richard G, 1986. "Replication in Empirical Economics: The Journal of Money, Credit and Banking Project," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 587-603, September.
  13. Arthur M. Diamond Jr., 1986. "What is a Citation Worth?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 21(2), pages 200-215.
  14. Sauer, Raymond D, 1988. "Estimates of the Returns to Quality and Coauthorship in Economic Academia," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(4), pages 855-66, August.
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