Sited, Sighted, and Cited: The Effect of JSTOR in Economic Research
32 Pages Posted: 11 Sep 2009 Last revised: 13 Feb 2018
Date Written: September 11, 2009
By increasing the ability to discover, access, and use academic journal articles, the Internet has become the dominant mode by which scholars stay abreast of the scholarly literature. This new technology is hypothesized to have impacted the referencing pattern as well as the research productivity of scholars. These hypotheses are tested in the area of economics using a natural experiment of access to the JSTOR article archiving service. We find evidence that access to journals available through JSTOR leads economists to refer more to JSTOR journals at the expense of non-JSTOR journals, that is, JSTOR access induces substitution away from journals not available in the JSTOR archive. Furthermore, JSTOR access increases the quantity, if not quality, of economic research generated at an institution. From this accumulated evidence, we deduce that Information and Communication Technology has the potential to not only increase productivity, but by increasing research productivity, can also increase the rate of economic growth.
Keywords: internet, scholarly communication, academic research
JEL Classification: O30, D20, L96
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation