Monday, May 19, 2014


From the Washington Post, some interesting reflections on "academic capture," based on an analogy to the economic concept of "regulatory capture":

"While not all data economists use are proprietary, access to proprietary data provides a unique advantage in a highly competitive academic market. To obtain those data academic economists have to develop a reputation to treat their sources nicely. Hence, their incentives to cater to industry or to the political authority that controls the data are similar to those of the regulators."

The author, a law professor, speculates whether similar pressures might apply in legal academia.

I'm just going to note that the same phenomenon evidently occurs in journalism, where "being nice to sources" is endemic.

In exchange for newsworthy stuff,
reporters write flattering fluff.

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