Intended and Unintended Consequences of a Publish-or-Perish Culture: A Worldwide Survey

CentER Discussion Paper Series No. 2012-003

32 Pages Posted: 12 Jan 2012  

Hendrik P. van Dalen

Tilburg University, Center and Faculty of Economics and Business Administration; Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI)

Kene Henkens

Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute

Date Written: January 11, 2012

Abstract

How does publication pressure in modern-day universities affect the intrinsic and extrinsic rewards in science? By using a worldwide survey among demographers in developed and developing countries, we show that the large majority perceive the publication pressure as high, but more so in Anglo-Saxon countries and to a lesser extent in Western Europe. However, scholars see both the pros (upward mobility) and cons (excessive publication and uncitedness, neglect of policy issues, etc.) of the so-called 'publish-or-perish' culture. By measuring behavior in terms of reading and publishing, and perceived extrinsic rewards and stated intrinsic rewards of practicing science, it turns out that publication pressure negatively affects the orientation of demographers towards policy and knowledge of the population facts. There are no signs that the pressure affects reading and publishing outside the core discipline.

Keywords: ncentives, productivity, science, publications, university

JEL Classification: A12, J4, M52

Suggested Citation

van Dalen, Hendrik P. and Henkens, Kene, Intended and Unintended Consequences of a Publish-or-Perish Culture: A Worldwide Survey (January 11, 2012). CentER Discussion Paper Series No. 2012-003. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1983205 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1983205

Hendrik P. Van Dalen (Contact Author)

Tilburg University, Center and Faculty of Economics and Business Administration ( email )

Tilburg University
P.O. Box 90153
NL-5000 LE Tilburg
Netherlands
+13 4668205 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.tilburguniversity.nl/webwijs/show/?uid=h.p.vandalen

Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI) ( email )

P.O. Box 11650
NL-2502 AR The Hague
Netherlands
+70 356 5237 (Phone)
+70 364 7187 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.nidi.knaw.nl/en/staff/vandalen/

Kene Henkens

Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute ( email )

P.O. Box 11650
The Hague NL-2502 AR
Netherlands
+3170 3565235 (Phone)
+3170 3647187 (Fax)

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