Friday links: Cormac McCarthy vs. academic writing, Fat Bear Week, and more

Also this week: bet your beliefs about replication, what’s on your blackboard, and more

From Jeremy:

A prediction market with cash prizes for predicting which social and behavioral science studies will replicate. Based on previous prediction market results, I wonder if it might be fairly hard to win prizes, because there are already some widely-known, effective rules of thumb for predicting which studies will replicate (e.g., “priming studies don’t replicate”). Hard to win money in a prediction market in which everyone has the same, decent information. Which I guess is the point–they want to find out if anyone can do better than just applying rules of thumb? (ht Marginal Revolution)

NYT opinion piece on the underrepresentation and bad experiences of black women in economics.

Some very good background on Elizabeth Warren’s academic career. To become a Harvard Law School prof as a woman in the 1970s, coming from her background, and to do so while taking both teaching and research seriously, is enormously impressive.

Wait, climate scientists and international policy negotiators who expect severe climate damage and have little confidence in current mitigation efforts are more likely to oppose geoengineering? I wish I knew more about why. The linked article identifies a couple of reasons, but can they really be the full story? Note that you should not infer anything about my own views on geoengineering from the fact that I linked to this.

If only Cormac McCarthy could rewrite everyone’s academic papers.

A photo essay on mathematicians’ blackboards.

Happy Fat Bear Week. 🙂

7 thoughts on “Friday links: Cormac McCarthy vs. academic writing, Fat Bear Week, and more

    • I did indeed note that subtext. 🙂 But it doesn’t actually resonate with me personally at all, even though I got my PhD from Rutgers. Faculty hiring in ecology isn’t at all hierarchical with respect to where people got their PhDs (https://dynamicecology.wordpress.com/2018/02/22/where-did-recently-hired-n-american-tenure-track-asst-professors-of-ecology-get-their-phds/). Harvard and Yale law profs look down on Rutgers, but Harvard and Yale EEB profs don’t.

      My anecdotal impression is that you can divide academia pretty neatly into fields that are *very* hierachical with respect to where people got their terminal degrees, and fields that are not hierarchical at all in that way. There don’t seem to be many intermediately-hieararchical fields as far as I know, though I can’t claim exhaustive knowledge.

      • Huh. I had the vague impression that fields where you write books (so you have very few to no publications), and get hired into faculty jobs straight out of your PhD (so you have very little track record) emphasised where you did your PhD, and those where you write papers and spend a lot of time postdoccing don’t (which made sense to me, since it would reflect how much of a track record people have, and thus how much you can judge them by their own work at a glance). But I’ll admit, I have never tried to look at it systematically.

      • Yes, I share that impression. What I don’t know is whether there are fields that are intermediate in terms of how much time people spend as postdocs and how many papers they write.

  1. I’ve received student papers with no punctuation and no attribution. That’s a bit McCarthyish the commenter said as he slid sideways off his horse into the chalky silt.

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