RePEc in April 2015

May 3, 2015

This was a big month, with almost 50,000 works added to RePEc. In part, this was due to the following new participants: Entrepreneurship Training Center Albania, Italian Development Economists Association, and University of Groningen. We have counted 535,112 file downloads and 2,031,692 abstract views. And this big push in indexed material also helped in passing several milestones:

1,750,000 indexed works
1,100,000 indexed articles
1,000,000 indexed articles with full text
700,000 items are cited
500,000 items with JEL code


Server downtime on Saturday May 2, 2015

May 1, 2015

The RePEc services based at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis will not be accessible starting around 7am CST (12:00 GMT) to perform necessary maintenance. This pertains to the RePEc Author Service, IDEAS, EDIRC, RePEc Genealogy, RePEc Biblio, RePEc Input Service, RePEc Plagiarism Committee, EconAcademics and QM&RBC. All other RePEc services will be available as usual.

Updates will be provided on this blog.

7:08 am CDT: web servers are offline as scheduled

7:55 am CDT: web servers are back up


Volunteer appreciation: Simplice Asongu

May 1, 2015

pas114

RePEc relies on volunteer work to function, and many are contributing. One can help in small and big way. Simplice Asongu is one of those who have embraced RePEc and contribute in big ways. He is one of the editors on MPRA, the Munich Personal RePEc Archive which allows authors whose home institution does not participate in RePEc to upload their works and have them listed. While an institutional archive has some editorial control if only to preserve the reputation of the institution, anybody can upload at MPRA and thus a minimum of quality control is required: it should be about economics, it should be an academic work, it should not violate copyrights, the full text needs to be legible, and the required metadata needs to be complete. As material in any language could be uploaded to MPRA, this required a large diversity of editors that make sure the uploaded paper is appropriate. Of course, English is by far the most frequent language and necessitates several editors to handle the workload. Simplice is one of them, and he has so far handled close to 8000 papers.

Simplice currently works at the African Governance and Development Institute (AGDI), a think tank based in Yaoundé (Cameroon). He is an empirical economist principally interest in growth development and finance issues for Africa. Doing research in Africa is not the easiest, and it is remarkable that he remains productive in his academic undertakings in such an environment, and even finds time to help RePEc in significant ways.

If you want to help RePEc as well, even in small ways, here is a list of some volunteer opportunities.


RePEc in March 2015

April 6, 2015

What is new in RePEc? A new feature at CitEc, our citation analysis project: you can now choose to receive citation alerts about any economist registered in RePEc. We welcomed the following new RePEc archives: Association for Entreprenorial Spirit Promotion, Danish Rational Economic Agents Model (DREAM), Hungarian Demographic Research Institute, International Institute of Social and Economic Sciences, Varna University of Economics, Silesian University, Duncker & Humblot, Hongkong University of Science and Technology. And we counted 597,365 file downloads and 2,154,491 abstract views. As for new thresholds we surpassed over the past month, we can report:

333333333 cumulative abstract views through reporting RePEc services (that is, one third of a billion)
50000 NEP reports disseminated.


RePEc to raise funds through citation boosts

April 1, 2015

RePEc is a volunteer initiative that is run without any source of revenue. The hosting of RePEc services is provided by sponsors who either pay for this hosting or share part of their infrastructure. Over the history of RePEc, however, there have been circumstances where an emergency situation required finding a quick solution where buying hardware or hosting would have been much more efficient that first seeking a sponsor.

For this reason, RePEc is now introducing a way to generate some funds. One problem is that RePEc will always provide all its services for free, so there is no way to provide some exclusive service for a fee. There is one area where we can help with the most common complaint of authors: they are not sufficiently cited. Authors can help there for free, by adding the full references of articles and papers citing their work. CitEc has a convenient and fairly popular form for that. But if you want a boost beyond that, RePEc now offers a way to buy a higher citation count that will be towards the RePEc rankings.

Specifically, this applies to all ranking criteria that use citation counts, except for the H-Index, and the two criteria that count the number of authors citing someone. You can buy a series of modifiers to the base number that is currently published, call it R. You can increase that base by f. Then you can multiply the sum R+f by p. These two enhancement are valid, by default for one month. But you can increase their validity up to L periods, during which they depreciate linearly. This gives you three citation score enhancements you can buy, f, p, and L.

The actual formula that will be used to determine the new score would then be (after some necessary normalization):

CodeCogsEqn

where:
A is the new score,
pi is the multiplicative boost for period i,
fi is the additive boost for period i,
L is the duration boost,
R is the initial score, and
o=√i.

The price of each boost will be determined each month according to demand. To this effect, interested users need to log into this form during the first 15 days of the month to express interest in buying a number of each of the three boosts. The system then determines a unit price for each and they can purchase the boosts during the rest of the month (including adjusting the numbers) at the same address. Note that it is required to log in during the first 15 days to do a purchase.

The new scores will be used for the rankings, and there will be no visible mark that they have been boosted. Of course, a user can go and count the citations on an author’s profile and compare that to the numbers in the rankings (remember not to count self-citations and multiple versions of the same work). The new scores will also count towards the affiliations.


RePEc in February 2015

March 3, 2015

February is a short month, and it shows. Only two institutions opened a RePEc archive: The Berlin Doctoral Program and Queen Mary University of London. We counted 500,870 file downloads and 1,770,813 abstract views. We have added a new ranking which counts up to 10 people per institution, following a survey on this blog.

60000000 cumulative downloads through IDEAS
25000 indexed book chapters
8000 students listed in RePEc Genealogy
3000 advisors listed in RePEc Genealogy


How to optimize an institution’s ranking in RePEc

February 25, 2015

As we will very soon add a new institution ranking (voting on it will soon close. Edit: The new ranking is now live), it is a good opportunity to recap how institutions can optimize how they are getting ranked in RePEc. For the existing rankings, see here.


Get your authors listed, and with proper affiliations
The score of an institution is determined by the authors that declare being affiliated with in. If authors are not registered with the RePEc Author Service or have not declared the institution among their affiliation(s), we cannot count them towards the institutional ranking. Institutions can check who is registered by looking themselves up at EDIRC, RePEc’s institutional directory. Note that authors with several affiliations have to allocate percentages to each, and their scores are distributed according to those shares.
Get your authors to maintain their profiles
Authors are ranked as well, and whatever allows them to optimize their ranking scores works for their home institutions as well. You can follow this blog post on this topic.
Get your publications listed
This applies in particular to working papers. If the local working papers are indexed in RePEc, then local authors can add them to their profiles, and then only can they count towards the institution. Knowing that working papers are downloaded much more frequently than articles, this makes a difference. Also, if an article or book chpater is therwise not available, citations to them can still be captured if there is a working paper version available. Instructions on how to index publications in RePEc are here.
Link to those publications
As the various RePEc services provide listings for your working papers, you can link to them. Some even skip listing them on their website, linking only to RePEc. Two popular sites for that are EconPapers and IDEAS.
Have graduates listed as well
Through the RePEc Genealogy, departments can now list the graduates from their doctoral program. This matters because the performance of graduate programs is one of the factors in determining the rankings. Again, EDIRC has those alumni listed.


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