Researching the Research: A Central Banking Edition

Simona Malovaná, Martin Hodula, Zuzana Rakovská

We build two unique data sets describing research in central banks in Europe and the United States. These data sets offer a novel insight into central banks' research activities, the research topics covered, collaborations between central banks and with other institutions, gender diversity and research popularization, among other things. We identify significant heterogeneity among central banks from different regions. Nevertheless, we are also able to identify several important stylized facts. First, following the Global Financial Crisis, financial stability surpassed monetary policy as the leading research topic. Second, we document a substantial decline in papers with single authors, from 40% in 2000 to less than 20% in 2019. Still, research in central banks is highly concentrated, as the top 10% of authors contribute to about 50% of all central banks' research publications. Third, while central banks form enormous research networks, we find that most of this research collaboration is region-specific. Fourth, we document an increasing representation of women in research teams, but the gender gap persists and is closing only slowly. In this respect, small central banks are found to employ more female researchers than large ones. Fifth, major central banks with a well-established research tradition achieve the highest average impact factor, with a few research papers contributing the most to this average.

JEL Codes: A1, A3, D85, E58, O31

Keywords: Central banking, collaboration, gender diversity, impact factor, network analysis, research, topic analysis

Issued: December 2020

Download: RPN No. 3/2020 (pdf, 1.6 MB)