This paper analyzes how evaluators' private information and subjective biases affect evaluations in academia. We use evidence from centralized selection exams in Spain, where evaluators are randomly assigned to promotion committees. Candidates are significantly more likely to be promoted when they are evaluated by an acquainted evaluator, but the source of the premium depends on the nature of this relationship. Our findings suggest that, when candidates are evaluated by their PhD adviser, a colleague or a coauthor, evaluation biases dominate the potential impact of informational gains. Weaker links, on the other hand, may improve the efficiency of the selection process. (JEL D82, I23, J44, M51)
Zinovyeva, Natalia, and Manuel Bagues.
"The Role of Connections in Academic Promotions."
American Economic Journal: Applied Economics,
Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
Higher Education; Research Institutions
Professional Labor Markets; Occupational Licensing
Personnel Economics: Firm Employment Decisions; Promotions