Sunday, March 16, 2008

Rankings of Finance Doctoral Programs

Because I'm one of the few bloggers who regularly write about the life of a finance professor, I get about a dozen questions a month from people considering a PhD in finance (Note: if you're interested, you can read about a finance professor's typical day here and here, and about what's involved in getting a PhD in finance here).

The emails are one of the more surprising and most enjoyable things about writing the blog, and at least a couple of the folks who've sent me questions are currently in PhD programs. I look forward to seeing how their careers progress, knowing I may have played some small part it them.

Some of the most frequent questions I get are along the lines of "How do I find out how well respected University X's finance doctoral program is?" or alternately, "Where can a get a list of rankings of finance doctoral programs?"

I should have done this some time ago, but I'm a bit slow at times. But, since Unknown Daughter and She Who Must Be Obeyed are out to a classmate's birthday party, and Unknown Son is entranced by a Harry Potter movie, this seems like a good time to spent a little time on the Almighty Google. Here are the results:
  • Karolyis and Silvestrini have a piece on SSRN titled "Comparing the Research Productivity of Finance PhD Program Graduates" here
  • Jean Heck has a similar piece titled "Establishing a Pecking Order for Finance Academics: Ranking of U.S. Finance Doctoral Programs here. Both it and the Karolyi/Silvestrini piece analyze productivity on the basis of the author's doctoral-granting program, but this one lists a few more doctoral programs than the other piece. So, it might yield some possibilities for those looking for less selective programs.
  • Finally, Arizona State has a ranking of finance departments (which may or may not have doctoral programs) here, while EconPhD has a similar one covering several finance areas here.
Updated 3/18: A regular reader of the blog (thanks, Jeff) submitted a couple other rankings
  • Chan, Lung and Wolfe have a ranking of finance departments based on "citations" (in case you're not familiar with the term, a citation occurs when one author references another in his work). So, citation counts are often used as a measure of the impact a person's work has in the larger academic community.
  • The University of Texas-Dallas has a ranking of business schools (not finance departments) based on publications in a pretty wide number of journals across all business disciplines.
Hopefully, these will prove useful. If any of you are aware of any other rankings that are relatively recent (i.e. done in the last 4-5 years or so), let me know and I'll update the list.