Thursday, December 29, 2016

Ranking Economics Institutions Applying a Frontier Approach to RePEc data

Back in 2010 I posted that the RePEc ranking of economics institutions needed to be adjusted by size. Better quality institutions do tend to be bigger but as RePEc just sums up publications, citations etc rather than averaging them larger institutions also get a higher RePEc ranking even if they aren't actually better quality. In the post, I suggested using a frontier approach. The idea is that the average faculty member at Harvard perhaps is similar to one at Chicago (I haven't checked this), but because Harvard is bigger it is better. So, looking at average scores of faculty members might produce a misleading ranking.

A reader sent me an e-mail query about an updated version of this and I thought that was a good idea for a new post:

The chart shows the RePEc rank for 190 top-level institutions (I deleted NBER) against their number of registered people on RePEc. I drew a concave frontier by hand. How have things changed since 2010? The main change is the appearance of Stanford on the frontier. Also, the Federal Reserve is now listed as one institution, so the Minnesota Fed has dropped off the frontier. Dartmouth is now slightly behind the frontier and Tel Aviv looks like it has also lost a little ground. Otherwise, not much has changed.

1 comment:

  1. Note that there are rankings taking only the 10 best from each institution. This adjusts for size, although not completely.

    Also, looking at size is unfair to institutions that have more young people, for example graduate students.