When using Twitter, both economists and natural scientists communicate mostly with people outside their profession, but economists tweet less, mention fewer people and have fewer conversations with strangers than a comparable group of experts in the sciences. That is the central finding of research by Marina Della Giusta and colleagues, to be presented at the Royal Economic Society’s annual conference at the University of Sussex in Brighton in March 2018.
Their study also finds that economists use less accessible language with words that are more complex and more abbreviations. What’s more, their tone is more distant, less personal and less inclusive than that used by scientists.
The researchers reached these conclusions gathering data on tens of thousands of tweets from the Twitter accounts of both the top 25 economists and 25 scientists as identified by IDEAS and sciencemag. The top three economists are Paul Krugman, Joseph Stiglitz and Erik Brynjolfsson; the top three scientists are Neil deGrasse Tyson, Brian Cox and Richard Dawkins.
Here is further information, via Romesh Vaitilingam. But I cannot find the original research paper on-line. These are interesting results, but still I would like to see the shape of the entire distribution…