Reputation Markets

At leiter reports, they’re discussing letters of recommendation for academic job seekers, and the discussion has moved into a question of whether professors should make explicit comparisons (“this is my nth best student”, or “this student is at least as good as Justin was, which isn’t saying much”).

Naturally, what we need is a database of all the comparisons made by any given professor which can be used to judge their intertemporal consistency as well as their intrinsic plausibility.  Someone smarter than me can tackle the privacy issues.

Sometimes I say things and I can’t decide whether they’re sarcasm or wishful thinking.

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