Social Ties and Favoritism in Chinese Science

49 Pages Posted: 7 Feb 2017

See all articles by Raymond J. Fisman

Raymond J. Fisman

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Boston University

Jing Shi

Macquarie University

Yongxiang Wang

University of Southern California - Marshall School of Business

Rong Xu

Renmin University of China

Date Written: February 2017

Abstract

We study favoritism via hometown ties, a common source of favor exchange in China, in fellow selection of the Chinese Academies of Sciences and Engineering. Hometown ties to fellow selection committee members increase candidates' election probability by 39 percent, coming entirely from the selection stage involving an in-person meeting. Elected hometown-connected candidates are half as likely to have a high-impact publication as elected fellows without connections. CAS/CAE membership increases the probability of university leadership appointments and is associated with a US$9.5 million increase in annual funding for fellows' institutions, indicating that hometown favoritism has potentially large effects on resource allocation.

Suggested Citation

Fisman, Raymond and Shi, Jing and Wang, Yongxiang and Xu, Rong, Social Ties and Favoritism in Chinese Science (February 2017). NBER Working Paper No. w23130, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2912103

Raymond Fisman (Contact Author)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
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Boston University ( email )

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Jing Shi

Macquarie University ( email )

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Sydney, NSW 2109
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://https://researchers.mq.edu.au/en/persons/jing-shi

Yongxiang Wang

University of Southern California - Marshall School of Business ( email )

701 Exposition Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90089
United States

Rong Xu

Renmin University of China

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