Academic Superstars: Competent or Lucky?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

I show that the social stratification of academic science can arise as a result of academics' preference for reading work of high epistemic value. This is consistent with a view on which academic superstars are highly competent academics, but also with a view on which superstars arise primarily due to luck. I argue that stratification is beneficial if most superstars are competent, but not if most superstars are lucky. I also argue that it is impossible to tell whether most superstars are in fact competent or lucky, or which group a given superstar belongs to, and hence whether stratification is overall beneficial.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4499-4518
Number of pages20
JournalSynthese
Volume194
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017
Externally publishedYes

Cite this