Leadership in Scholarship: Editors' Appointments and the Profession's Narrative
40 Pages Posted: 27 Jan 2018 Last revised: 4 Dec 2020
Date Written: December 4, 2020
Academic journals disseminate new knowledge, and therefore can influence the direction and composition of ongoing research by choosing what to publish. We study the change in the topic structure of papers published in the American Economic Review (AER) after the appointments of editors and coeditors of the AER between 1985 and 2011 using a textual analysis of accepted publications. We compare AER's topic structure to that of the other top general interest journals. The appointment of new AER editors, while accompanied by a minor co-movement of AER topics towards topics of editors' post-appointment publications, is not an indicator of editors' personal taste in topics, but rather indicates the desire of those who appoint editors to premediate trends in other Top 5 journals.
Keywords: Academia; Knowledge Dissemination; In uence; Journals; Editors; Publications; Latent Dirichlet Allocation; Topic Analysis
JEL Classification: A11, A14, O3
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation