Economics serving society

A unified and more visible community

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The establishment of the scholarly co-operation that is PSE was both the result of and the lever for an earlier assembling of the scientific, pedagogical and funding resources of six major actors (1) in economics and social science research. From the 1980s to the middle of the 2000s, several mergers of research teams took place (Ceras, Delta, CES, PjSE…). The birth of PSE in December 2006, at the initiative of the researchers themselves and in line with the official national strategy for research, was the final result of this unifying process. With an independent legal identity, the foundation – supported by an active and demanding Scientific Board – has consolidated this new unity, reinforced its community and intensified its scholarly production and visibility.

Uniting and defining a common ethic

In 2009, the six founding members agreed upon the principle of the common academic name Paris School of Economics, followed by the name of the institution to which a particular researcher is attached. This shared signature has seen PSE appear in international rankings – it now figures among the best centres of economics in the world – which contributes to its visibility and appeal (2).

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The foundation is also committed to guaranteeing the integrity of the research conducted by its members. A charter adopted in 2012 defines the ethical principles and transparency rules to which all PSE researchers are committed, particularly through declaration of their supplementary income, and of their non-academic functions and responsibilities. In addition, all research contracts entered into by PSE make explicit that the economists are free to publish the results of their research.

Consolidating the community

In line with its initial missions, PSE works to strengthen the loyalty of its members who might be tempted to go abroad, and to encourage those who have left to return to France ; it also works to recruit both promising young researchers and established economists. Through an attractive salary policy and provision of a quality working environment, PSE has thus integrated 37 new teacher-researchers from without its constituent institutions since 2006, including 10 economists who have returned to France and 18 foreigners. These recruits have strengthened key disciplines, especially macroeconomics, political economy, theory and development economics. In December 2016, PSE gathers 145 teachers-researchers of 18 different nationalities. 31% of them are less than 40 years old, 36% are between 40 and 50 years old, 17% between 50 and 60 years old, 16% are more than 60 years old.

“The Paris School of Economics offers a unique combination of a critical mass of excellent researchers in all fields and research produced in an atmosphere of great intellectual freedom. The result: work that departs from the beaten track and which advances the science” - Gabriel Zucman (APE 2008, PhD 2013)

Intensification of production and scholarly visibility

Drafted, presented, discussed and then submitted to scientific journals, the academic articles constitute an exceptional global bibliographic database, a key vector of knowledge sharing. By offering an environment conducive to research and lighter course loads, PSE encourages its members productivity. More than 950 articles have been published since 2011, of which almost half have appeared in top-level publications and five per cent in the five best international journals.

“PSE is for me synonymous of committed, diverse, cutting edge research conducted by top level researchers in a welcoming environment [...], a large dynamic team that makes conducting research an enthusiastic job! Happy birthday PSE!” - Olivia Bertelli (PPD 2012, PhD 2016)

Several particularly active, high-profile researchers embody this visibility at the highest level: 23 PSE members appear in the top five per cent (h-index) of Repec, the international measure of reference for publications in economics (2), of whom nine were recruited thanks to the facilities and resources contributed by the foundation.

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The national and international distinctions regularly accorded to PSE economists also bear witness to this visibility. The following is just a selection:

  • FRANCE : the 2016 Revue economique prize went to David Martimort; the 2015 CNRS silver medal to Gabrielle Demange; 2010 and 2013 bronze medals to Frédéric Koessler and Olivier Tercieux; the INRA Laurier jeune chercheur in 2011 to Anne-Celia Disdier.
  • INTERNATIONAL : the 2013 Yrjö Jahnsson Award went to Thomas Piketty; the 2013 Juan Luis Londoño prize to François Bourguignon; the 2013 Geoffrey J.D. Hewings prize to Laurent Gobillon; the 2016 National Award in Applied Economics to Ekaterina Zhuravskaya; and the 2009 Young Economist Award to Bénédicte Apouey.

(1) CNRS, Ecole des Ponts Paris Tech, EHESS, ENS, INRA, Université Paris 1 Panthéon Sorbonne
(2) RePec is a global base of refereed academic articles. It offers a census and a ranking of economists and their publications by affiliation and institutional weighting, and takes into account in particular the “impact” of articles, using for example, the “h-index” which is the number of citations of a publication. By aggregation, it offers institutional rankings of “Economics Departments” and “Economic Institutions”.