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DO ABCs GET MORE CITATIONS THAN XYZs?

Wei Huang ()

Economic Inquiry, 2015, vol. 53, issue 1, 773-789

Abstract: Using a sample of U.S.‐based scientific journal articles, I examine the relationship between author surname initials and paper citations, finding that the papers with first authors whose surname initials appear earlier in the alphabet get more citations, and that this effect does not exist for non‐first authors. Further analysis shows that the alphabetical order effect is stronger in those fields with longer reference lists, and that such alphabetical bias exists among citations by others and not for self‐citations. In addition, estimates also reveal that the alphabetical order effect is stronger when the length of reference lists in citing papers is longer. These findings suggest that the order in reference lists plays an important role in the alphabetical bias. (JEL D0, O3, Z1)

Date: 2015
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