Incentives work on economists, too!

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Science  29 Aug 2014:
Vol. 345, Issue 6200, pp. 1017
DOI: 10.1126/science.345.6200.1017-b

Editors treasure prompt and informative referees. Chetty et al. show that modest psychological and economic nudges can speed up how rapidly referees return their reviews without degrading their quality. In a randomized experiment involving 1500 referees at the Journal of Public Economics, they offered some referees $100 for turning in their reviews by the 4-week deadline, whereas they told others, who had agreed to a 6-week deadline, that their delivery dates would be posted publicly. From a comparison across these groups and the non-incentivized controls, they conclude that 4 weeks is enough and that both social pressure and money work.

J. Econ. Perspect. 28, 169 (2014).

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