Correcting content in RePEc

October 11, 2013

The decentralized nature of metadata collection in RePEc can make it challenging for users to understand where to ask for corrections to incorrect data. In particular, in the vast majority of the cases, asking the RePEc team to amend something is not the solution even though this is the first reaction of users. To facilitate this process, we now have a page on IDEAS that describes whom to address requests for corrections. In most cases these are the metadata publishers, but there are exceptions.


RePEc in September 2013

October 4, 2013

What is new this month? We inaugurated a job market paper archive for the doctoral students looking for academic opportunities. We welcomed a few new participant archives: Institute for Research on Population and Social Policies, ROME Network, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Competitività Regole Mecati (CERM), Job Market Paper Archive, Associazione Italiana Economisti del Lavoro, Now Publishers. We also counted 525,434 file downloads and 2,100,794 abstract views in September 2013. Finally, we passed only one threshold this month: 400000 items indexed by JEL code. There will be much more to report next month.


The Job Market Paper archive

September 19, 2013

A graduating economics PhD or doctoral student who is looking for a job in academia or policy circles is typically doing so with a “job market paper.” The JMP is the one that many recommendation letters from faculty focus on, it is the one that is mostly talked about in job interviews, and it is presented during campus visits. It is thus fair to say that the JMP is the best this student has done so far, and a lot of effort goes into this paper. Shouldn’t this work then be more widely disseminated than a few recruiting committees?

We are thus introducing the Job Market Paper archive on RePEc. Job candidates can upload their paper, which gets the standards treatment of any new working paper in RePEc: it gets listed on the many services using RePEc data, including the websites EconPapers and IDEAS, as well as the email notification service NEP. In addition, the papers are hosted by a RePEc server for posterity. This is important, as job market candidates tend to find jobs and often move their web page as a consequence, resulting in broken links. Finally, the presence of the papers in this series clearly identifies the author as a new economist one may want to look at for a hire. Recruiters can simply follow what is new in this archive.

As expected, certain restrictions apply. To learn more, see here.

Note for that for those who are not on the job market and do not have access to a local working paper series that participates in RePEc (instructions), MPRA is still available.


Volunteer appreciation: Laura Ştefānescu

September 12, 2013

lauraLaura Ştefānescu is Professor at the Faculty of Financial Management Accounting of Craiova, Spiru Haret University, Romania, where she teaches Elements of Information Technology, Business Informatics, Databases, Decision System Support, E-Business.

In 2008, she started volunteering for RePEC by editing weekly reports on Knowledge Management and Knowledge Economy (NEP-KNM) and from 2010 as General Editor of NEP. In this respect, she prepares the weekly lists of new working papers from which the field editors will pick those relevant to their report. This crucial task is largely invisible to the public, hence we thank Laura for her selfless dedication to the cause of democratizing the dissemination of research in economics. And, unfortunately, she is the only woman among those most heavily involved in RePEc. We would welcome more!


RePEc in August 2013

September 4, 2013

Over the past month, we welcomed the following new archive participants: African Governance and Development Institute, Universität Bern (II), Universitatea Creştină “Dimitrie Cantemir” (II), American Enterprise Institute, OSINERGMIN (Peru), Central Bank of Montenegro, University of Tokyo (II), Better Advances Press, Université Libre de Bruxelles (II). With the addition of Cameroun and Montenegro, this brings the number of countries hosting RePEc archives to 78. We also counted 1,806,601 abstract views and 437,187 downloads from those RePEc services participating in our statistics.

Finally, the following thresholds where passed last month:
30000000 cumulative articles downloads
1300000 items available online
800000 articles available online
500000 articles with abstracts
200000 articles with extracted references
5000 cited books
3000 software components available online
20% of registered authors indexed in RePEc Genealogy


A proposed RePEc fantasy league

August 22, 2013

Back on the 1st of April (Fool’s Day) of this year, I introduced the RePEc fantasy league. While this post was to be more on the humorous side, many people took it seriously. And interest for the league is unabated, with several people recently asking about it. So I guess there is sufficient demand, and it looks like it could be fun to play with economists. Hence, I want to make a proposal, ask for comments, and let people vote whether such a fantasy league should be run.

Here is the proposal. As the publishing output of economists is rather slow-moving and there is no defined season for play, the league is set up for continuous entry and play is on an infinite horizon. A set of rules has been drafted, and I welcome comments about them, especially from those who are more used to play in this kind of league.

For those who are worried that they could be virtually subject to trades, there would be the ability to opt out from being played with.

Beyond fine-tuning rules, there is also the question whether such a league should be run at all. Below is a poll that will be open for a month. Feel free to vote.


Openness of Economic Data and Code

August 9, 2013

The publication of an article or a working paper is only part of the scientific process. Scrutiny by the scientific community during the peer-review process and later through replication attempts and extensions of the original work should be part of it. Unfortunately, very little of that is happening in economics. Indeed, a significant hurdle is that very often the computer code and/or the data used for the analysis are not disseminated. While some journals now make this a requirement for publication, there is otherwise very little incentive for researchers to make this available. In part, this is also a question of culture, as we are not used to cite datasets, for example, and prefer to acknowledge their use in a footnote.

To change this culture and push for making code and data more readily available, the Open Knowledge Foundation and put together a set of Principles on Open Economics. Read them and sign on if you think you are willing to endorse them.

On the RePEc front, we are working to get datasets indexed as well. If interested in participating in this, contact me.


RePEc in July 2013

August 4, 2013

Some news from NEP: There is a new report, NEP-NPS (Nonprofit and Public Sectors), and a new NEP blog, NEP-ARA (Economics of the Arab World). The NEREUS project announced that is will be closing the Economists Online RePEc service at the end of the year. There are a few newly participating RePEc archives: ToKnowPress, Universidad de Alcalá de Henares, Universitatea Creştină “Dimitrie Cantemir”, Oklahoma State University, Akadémiai Kiadó, Sciences Po. But despite this small crop, a lot of new material was added to RePEc, 6600 papers and 10500 articles. We counted 470,265 file downloads and 1,939,170 abstract views last month.

The thresholds we reached:
5000000 matched citations
300000 cited articles
3000 indexed software components
400 RePEc-wide H-index


RePEc in June 2013

July 3, 2013

What is new this month? We introduce two new ranking criteria, breadth of citations for registered authors and strength of students for authors, institutions, and regions. The latter ranking for institutions comes to an evaluation of graduate programs and is based on information provided by users to the RePEc Genealogy.

We welcomed a series of new RePEc archives: Society for the Study of Business and Finance, Xiamen University, University of Belgrade, American University of Sharjah, National School of Political and Administrative Studies, Serbian Association of Economists, Universidad Nacional de General Sarmiento, University fo Amsterdam (III), Lifescience Global, IPAG Business School, Istanbul Bilgi University. We counted 500,656 file downloads and 1,942,807 abstract views. And we passed the following thresholds:

2500000 cumulative abstract views for book chapters
1400000 listed works
250000 JEL-coded working papers
7000 books available online
1000 contributors to the RePEc Genealogy


Little known RePEc features

June 29, 2013

Since 1997, RePEc services have found various ways of disseminating the bibliographic metadata collected with the RePEc projects. As the data and the types of data have expanded over the years, services were able to add more and more features, some of which are not well known. The purpose of this post is to highlight some of them. A broad introduction to RePEc services was recently posted here.

When a bibliographic item or an author is mentioned on Wikipedia with a link to a RePEc service, a link to the Wikpedia article in provided on the relevant IDEAS page.

The same applies to blog posts that have been identified through the EconAcademics.org. blog aggregator for economic research.

A large number of viewership statistics are available at LogEc. This includes statistics for individual papers and articles, authors, series and journals. For the latter, this includes total readership as well as most popular items within a series or journal. For authors, one can also find the most read authors by country.

All RePEc services offer search functions, But if you do not know what to look for, you can look at a random item.

Publishers provide all bibliographic metadata to RePEc. Sometimes, their data contains errors that prevents the publications to be indexed appropriately, if at all. This can be checked here.

On IDEAS, one can export bibliographic information in various formats for various lists: publications of an author, references of an item, citations of an item, and citations of an author.

It possible to track additions to author profiles, JEL code, series, and journals with MyIDEAS.

MyIDEAS also allows users to flag items they run across IDEAS and keep them in their account. They can then be annotated, sorted into folders and exported in various bibliographic formats.

There is a Facebook plug-in that allows you to display you last three publications. Install it from here. Update: I am told this functionality cannot be obtained on Facebook anymore.

One can obtain a compilation of the publications of all members of an institution. Find th link on the institution’s page at EDIRC, where there is also a link to the publication list of the institution’s alumni, if applicable.

You can also create a list of publications for a custom group of people. See the current lists or create your own here.

If you want to make public a reading list for a topic or a course syllabus, you can create this here.

A few editors have started to determine the most important works in their research area. See RePEc Biblio, where you can volunteer to contribute, too.

Economists are very interconnected through co-authorship. You can explore this co-authorship network at CollEc, where you can also find how far removed from each other any two economists are (“degrees of separation”).

An important part of RePEc is citation analysis. Unfortunately, this fails for some documents, either for technical reasons or because publishers do not furnish relevant data. One can help our citation project CitEc through this form.

RePEc tries to match different versions of the same work. The conditions are that 1) at least one co-authors has all versions in her RePEc profile, and 2) the titles are very similar. When the process fails, for example when the titles are different, users can help through this form

Matching citations to items listed in RePEc is a very complex process, for example because there are many citation formats and because authors do make mistakes in the references. When matches are too uncertain, authors can help. They should click on the “citation” link in their RePEc Author Service profile and accept or reject proposed matches.

A new project tracks where and when an economist got his final degree, and who his advisor was. The data collection is crowd-sourced, so you can participate in the data collection here as well. See the RePEc Genealogy. Collected data will soon be used to evaluate graduate programs.

Unfortunately, we have cases of plagiarism. When relevant authorities do not deal with such cases, afflicted authors can turn to the RePEc Plagiarism Committee, which evaluates cases and possibly names and shames them.

And finally, for economics departments and publishers that do not yet participate and index their publications in RePEc, instructions are available.


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