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Writing Matters

Jan Feld, Corinna Lines and Libby Ross
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Corinna Lines: Write Limited in Wellington
Libby Ross: Write Limited in Wellington

No 16571, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)

Abstract: For papers to have scientific impact, they need to impress our peers in their role as referees, journal editors, and members of conference committees. Does better writing help our papers make it past these gatekeepers? In this study, we estimate the effect of writing quality by comparing how 30 economists judge the quality of papers written by PhD students in economics. Each economist judged five papers in their original version and five different papers that had been language edited. No economist saw both versions of the same paper. Our results show that writing matters. Compared to the original versions, economists judge edited versions as higher quality; they are more likely to accept edited versions for a conference; and they believe that edited versions have a better chance of being accepted at a good journal.

Keywords: academic writing; writing quality; economics; randomized experiment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: A10 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 45 pages
Date: 2023-11
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-edu, nep-exp, nep-hpe and nep-sog
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Published - published in: Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2024, 217, 378-397

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