COVID-19 and the Illusion of Productivity

33 Pages Posted: 19 Apr 2022

See all articles by Yuxiang Jiang

Yuxiang Jiang

Southwestern University of Finance and Economics (SWUFE)

Dominik Rösch

State University of New York at Buffalo - School of Management

Ruijie Liu

Southwestern University of Finance and Economics (SWUFE)

Cristian Ioan Tiu

University at Buffalo; TIAA Institute

Date Written: April 18, 2022

Abstract

Using all papers posted on SSRN from July 2016 to August 2021 by authors from Top 1,000 business schools and economics departments, we investigate how COVID-19 affects research productivity, measured as the number of posted papers. We find that productivity declines, except for male and senior authors associated with Top 50 departments. COVID-19, therefore, appears to have further increased inequality between universities and authors. However, even the Top 50 productivity increase appears superficial, as it was driven by shorter papers, revisions, and more co-authors. We also document a tone change in abstracts. This change is, however, small and benign, unlikely to affect productivity or research integrity in the long term.

Keywords: COVID-19, productivity, inequality, behavioral

JEL Classification: A11, A14, J24, J16, J78

Suggested Citation

Jiang, Yuxiang and Rösch, Dominik and Liu, Ruijie and Tiu, Cristian Ioan, COVID-19 and the Illusion of Productivity (April 18, 2022). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4086866 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4086866

Yuxiang Jiang

Southwestern University of Finance and Economics (SWUFE) ( email )

555 Liutai Avenue
Chengdu, Sichuan 611130
China

Dominik Rösch

State University of New York at Buffalo - School of Management ( email )

Jacobs Management Center
Buffalo, NY 14222
United States

HOME PAGE: http://dominikroesch.com

Ruijie Liu

Southwestern University of Finance and Economics (SWUFE) ( email )

55 Guanghuacun St,
Chengdu, Sichuan 610074
China

Cristian Ioan Tiu (Contact Author)

University at Buffalo ( email )

238 Jacobs Management Center
Jacobs Hall, North Campus
Buffalo, NY NY 14260
United States
7166453299 (Phone)

TIAA Institute ( email )

8500 Andrew Carnegie Blvd
E3/S8
Charlotte, NC 28262
United States

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