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Walras last won the day on August 16 2012

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  1. Are you trying to make fun of me? I was having fun with the 1st quote and had some errors people were helpful in pointing out. The second was in response to misinformation in another thread about "top 7 or don't get a PhD". If you pull it out of context sure I sound like a fool. Anyway, you must have some other problem with me at the root of this. What is it? Edit: Just saw your 2nd and 3rd posts. So basically, are you trying to show that no meaningful extrapolations can be made from this stagnant ranking, or show that top 7 (8?) is a thing that will remain for the foreseeable future in some people's minds as a top tier?
  2. You have three options: 1) Ask about this on EJMR and be told you'll be an empty soulless failure for the rest of your life unless you go to MIT. 2) Ask on TM and be told how amazing Yale is as a placement, regardless of what has happened recently. 3) Ask your grandma and be told to go with your gut.
  3. I feel like everything you've said is true, but that you're also expecting too much out of other rankings. Other rankings are not going to quantify the value of placements and are at least as obsolete as these so they won't include new hires. Research productivity is very subjective too because you can't just take the number articles or citations. That's how some of the worst rankings are made because they don't take into account that some fields get more citations (If Hal White were still alive he'd be putting UCSD in the top 10 of unadjusted rankings with his robust SEs paper that has 16,000 citations) and journals have tiers so some journal articles are worth more than others. This means you have to have some human (opinion based) input on how to adjust these. There's also the fact that some faculty are dead wood with very productive past research records but nothing recently, which are going to look better on article count and citation based rankings unless you pick a rather arbitrary set of rules to discount them. Ultimately, USNews gets around these problems a bit by using reputation as a proxy for research productivity, which is neither worse nor better than trying to proxy than trying to subjectively quantify productivity and research quality. Obviously, I'm still a fan of deciding mostly with placement records when you feel you have a complete set to do comparisons with.
  4. My prediction Stanford would replace Chicago in the the tie for 1st didn't pan out, and any ideas what happened to Yale? 1st to 7th is surprising considering I don't remember any big faculty changes, and most of the rankings look really stable.
  5. Just to clarify, it seems to me (admittedly I'm not very knowledgeable about this) that Public Policy and Political Science PhDs both have roughly comparable academic job prospects ceteris paribus. One big problem, though, with trying to compare them is that the public policy job market is many times smaller than the political science job market, so the PhDs from the top 5 public policy schools may take up a similar share of the market as the output of the top 40 or 50 political science programs take up of their market. Of course, there are a lot fewer Public policy PhD programs, so you should basically see the difference as you move up the rankings as much more drastic then for political science programs. There's also the whole issue of public policy graduates having different tastes for academic vs policy jobs, so placements aren't going to be perfectly comparable. By the way, RAND seems to have a number of offices in different places. Have you been able to talk to them about how that's going to work out in upper years (e.g. will your funding come from a specific office, and do people regularly move to the Washington or Boston office). You'll get a pretty different experience if you're free to work face to face with Washington RAND personnel vs. stuck at the Santa Monica campus with options only to go to places like the New Orleans or Jackson office.
  6. If you're curious about rising/falling departments you should try to find records of who left or retired the department and who has joined. I don't have any good ideas to find people who left but maybe other TMers will have some ideas. New hires and retirees will be much easier since notable retirees will be listed as emeritus, and you can see on the CV how long they've been working there (or when they retired). Again, I'd be highly skeptical about using endowment as a proxy for this. Full professors move around for a lot of different reasons, but only a few major stars are probably being motivated by large salary differentials. After all, if you've bought a house and a family (and are already earning a few hundred thousand) the salary differential from a richer department is going to pale in comparison. Also, I wouldn't worry about department quality overall wildly swinging from faculty moves in the several years since the last rankings or making recent placements irrelevant. But I have heard of a few rare cases where the strengths of a department changed (e.g. UT austin according to unsubstantiated rumors had a large number of departures from departmental disputes and their new hires weren't able to recapture their strength in Enviro), but even this is pretty exceptional.
  7. If your internet just slowed down for a second that was mathemagician overloading the internet with a sudden surge of truth.
  8. Is that a real example? If so what institution is that? That sounds awesome. I've now had a few professors take us out for drinks after exams, but profs very rarely show up at our department's friday evening happy hours. Then again, if they did we'd have to stop gossiping about them there.
  9. Honestly, I think people who RA/TA connect slightly better with the department (well one person in the department) then people who just take classes the 1st year. I've also noticed your funding type is not really affecting whether we go to seminars (at least in my class). I mean the people on fellowship tend to go to more seminars but that's because they're cruising through classes. Also, Mandicrut if the department can't arrange something before April 15th why don't you email some graduate students and confirm what the department is saying about everyone managing to find RA/TA work right before the semester starts.
  10. I'm not sure Department Endowment will be significantly related to outcomes (after controlling for department quality through rankings). Unless you're looking for funding to do your own RCT the way department endowment will affect your experience will be the quality of the professors they can afford (which is already reflected much more accurately in rankings) and the size of the stipend they can offer (which you'll also have a better indicator of in your 1st year funding offer).
  11. Disclaimer: Berkeley ARE person here Since elizabethramir's considering Berkeley ARE I just want to clear up that looking at this placement (http://areweb.berkeley.edu/past_placements.php), in my opinion, it does not look like a 30-40 rank econ placements in terms of quality. Obviously, we are comparing apples and oranges a bit since ARE is going to have people also interested in natural resource and ag departments, but it seems comparable to UCLA's UCLA Economics or Maryland's Job Placement History | Department of Economics, University of Maryland. Still, I agree that it's a tough call since you should also have clear interests going in (development, energy, environmental or agriculture), and those other programs are very good too. About it's reputation, I'm not surprised a business school's faculty knows about it since it places IO people into business schools, but I've also spoken to a theoretical economist who was like "Berkeley ARE? Are they any good?" So it's reputation in econ circles might vary, but it may be because it's reputation is also dispersed across environmental, public policy, and business departments. Also, in response to blockRed the average entering class size really varies. This year it was 14, which was historically higher than average. I'm not sure exactly what's normal but I think it's 11-12. P.S. blockRed you go to Berkeley too. Do you really think Berkeley would match a private school's funding offer? They'll probably send out an email instead about how much better the quality of life will be in California (and neglect to mention the high cost of living).
  12. This has always made me curious. Whenever I hear about opposition to AA its usually from someone white (almost always Republican). I can't remember ever hearing opposition to AA from asian-Americans even, though, they are far more deeply hurt than whites. Is it that they lack the numbers/organization to mount a concerted protest of this, or that their value system is somewhat supportive of AA?
  13. @Chateauheart Again, this is not my opinion but I'd just like to clarify the argument since you seem to have misinterpreted it. It's not that having women in visible positions of success is meant to make academia look more attainable or attractive to women. It's to spur them in general to believe that they can achieve a successful career and change any priors about "glass ceilings" existing. I know this is a frail argument, and in some ways, if it ever was going to have any effect at all, it would have been something useful 10 or 20 years ago considering now there quite a few extremely successful role models, who aren't in acting or singing, for young women (albeit still not enough to make some people happy).
  14. I'm certainly not on the side of AA, and think the arguments for it at the Doctoral level are silly. Still, I'll play devil's advocate. A gender imbalance in a profession is not necessarily a good reason for AA, but a gender imbalance in professors could display the wrong message to the youth they teach or will teach. Under this argument it's a public good to have a more equal proportion of females in such visible positions of "success" when females are making key career choices. It's especially relevant some would argue in STEM fields that the problem of low numbers of females, which may indicate missed opportunities for society and the individuals to be better off, may be exacerbated by having overwhelmingly male professors. Some education studies at lower levels of education have argued (not sure about the status of this debate) pass on their expectations (i.e. "women can't do math as well"). Of course, economics isn't a STEM major (regardless of how much as we'd like to be), and I doubt there is much, if any, pressure from above on the department. But that's some rationale (besides the usual normative arguments about fairness).
  15. If a graduate department has any pressure coming down it will be gender based, not race based. It'll probably be about addressing gender inequalities, in which case its still arguably relevant to grad programs.
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