Plan your success and have confidence

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Plan your success and have confidence

  • Plan your success and have confidence

      • regardless of your appointment, your research output will likely be the single largest determinant in the tenure decision
      • set short- and long-term objectives (start with the end in mind)
      • recognize everyone has to start somewhere
      • develop a risk seeking attitude
      • overcome perfectionist tendencies
      • reviews are idiosyncratic – stick with it!

2) Work in large numbers (manage your pipeline)

  • 2) Work in large numbers (manage your pipeline)

      • typical paper takes 3-5 years to publish, whereas the typical tenure decision is made in 5-7 years
        • start early, submit often
        • publish your dissertation!
        • keep a list of paper ideas
        • leverage work with undergrad and grad students, but don’t count on it – you are responsible for your own success
      • deans can count

3) Take a portfolio perspective

  • 3) Take a portfolio perspective

      • balance high-risk papers/outlets with low-risk papers/outlets
      • balance the risk/return trade-off
      • many departments expect you to have one or more papers that are “AJAE or higher”

4) Develop a thick skin

  • 4) Develop a thick skin

      • reviews are fair on average
      • if a journal acceptance rate is 10-20% you can do the math
      • turn rejected papers around quickly
      • comments from reviewers on my papers
        • “this paper reminds me of a large number of Jayson Lusk papers I have read. It seems to be an attempt to re-package some points elsewhere, and make them sound more fundamental and serious than they are”
        • “this is a conceptual mess”
        • “the motivation of the paper provides a loose and self-serving review of the literature”
        • “are you selling soap, or doing science here?”
        • “this paper is a mess of poor motivation and poor execution”
        • “the paper . . . is severely hampered by its lack of a true economic question”
        • “The number of misspelled author names both in the text and in the references is insulting and inexcusable. . . . these names sound like names of well-known marketing academics that none of my PhD students could possibly misspell.”
      • The following two comments were received on the same paper
        • “portions of the paper read very poorly”
        • “I found the paper to be very well written and researched”

5) Do your homework

  • 5) Do your homework

      • know how to market your paper
      • read and cite the relevant literature
      • know how your paper “fits” into the literature
      • you should be very careful about say things like “this is the first paper to . . .”
      • what is your contribution?
      • clearly identify your contribution
        • make a compelling case for your paper
        • be careful not to “oversell”
      • use “good” papers as role models

Judiciously choose co-authors

  • Judiciously choose co-authors

      • people you like/respect
      • individuals with different comparative advantages
      • don’t let the 3rd or 4th author hold you up

7) Allocate and protect time for research

  • 7) Allocate and protect time for research

      • teaching/extension will dominate your time if you let it
      • responding to emails will dominate your time if you let it
      • should you spend more time on your research? (nights/weekends?)
      • prioritize your research
      • quickly complete revise and resubmits

8) Get and use feedback from others

  • 8) Get and use feedback from others

      • correspond with “stars” in the profession
      • thoroughly and effectively respond to reviewers
      • ask others to read your papers before you submit to journals
      • don’t expect high quality feedback from meetings presentations; use meetings to network

9) Realize publishing is a dynamic “game”

  • 9) Realize publishing is a dynamic “game”

      • the editor that rejects one paper is the same editor that might accept your next
      • it is always disappointing to have a paper rejected – don’t take it out on the editor
        • that said, you are the only one who will stand up for your academic contributions
        • implement a policy of waiting a week until responding to editors/reviewers
      • practice the “Golden Rule” in reviewing

10) Have fun!

  • 10) Have fun!

      • publish with a purpose
      • some purposes are self-serving
        • self gratification/ego
        • Hilmer and Hilmer (AJAE, 2005) show for agricultural economics professors that each additional research article increases salary from 0.5% to 1%
        • Golden et al. (RAE, 2006) shows that for each publication, an agricultural economics professor salary increases roughly $200/year
        • Swidler and Goldreyer (JF, 1998) find that, depending on professorial rank, the present value of the first top finance journal article published is between $19,493 and $33,754
      • other purposes are loftier

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