Beauty, Brains and Connections: Which Characteristics Predict Success in the Economics Ph.D. Junior Job Market?
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This paper adds to the literature that forecasts job placements for new economics Ph.D.s by creating one of the most unbiased forecasting models of job placement for a broad sample of job candidates to date. We use data gathered from the curriculum vitas (CVs) of Ph.D. students in the 2011 junior job market from the NBER’s listing of all economics Ph.D.-granting programs worldwide. We obtained CV information from 1,010 of the 1,120 Ph.D. students listed, attractiveness ratings for 837 of the candidates, and complete placement information for 849 of the job candidates. The most important predictors for success on the junior job market are high-quality publications and candidates’ undergraduate- and graduate-level institutions of study, as both are positively correlated with better job placement. Other strong predictors of candidate job placement are the amount of time spent teaching, time spent as a teaching assistant (TA), time taken to complete Ph.D. studies, and being Asian or Black. Each of these variables is positively correlated with worse placements for candidates. There is some evidence that advisor rank is related to job placement—an excellent advisor, in terms of publication record, is positively correlated with better job placement. We also find some evidence that attractive, White, female candidates place at better institutions.
The article of record as published may be located at http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2153936
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