Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=990021
 
 

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Citations (7)



 


 



Downloading Wisdom from Online Crowds


Albert Saiz


University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Uri Simonsohn


University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School

May 2007


Abstract:     
The internet contains billions of documents, is there useful information in the number of websites about different topics? We propose, based on the premise that the occurrence of a phenomenon increases the likelihood that people write about it, that the relative frequency of documents discussing a phenomenon can be used to proxy for the corresponding occurrence-frequency. After establishing the conditions under which such proxying is likely to be successful, we construct proxies for a number of demographic variables in the US and for corruption across US states and countries, obtaining average correlations with occurrence-frequencies of 0.46 and 0.61 respectively. We also replicate results from two separate published papers establishing the correlates of corruption. Finally, we construct the first index of corruption in US cities and study its correlates.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 48

Keywords: Proxy variables, econometrics, corruption, integration of beliefs, survey, internet, document

JEL Classification: B41, C42, C81, R10, J00

working papers series





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Date posted: June 3, 2007 ; Last revised: June 19, 2014

Suggested Citation

Saiz, Albert and Simonsohn, Uri, Downloading Wisdom from Online Crowds (May 2007). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=990021 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.990021

Contact Information

Albert Saiz (Contact Author)
University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School ( email )
314 Lauder-Fischer Hall
256 South Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6330
United States

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany
Uri Simonsohn
University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School ( email )
3730 Walnut Street
JMHH 500
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6365
United States
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