Rules – Doctoral Dissertation

Paul Romer’s Rules
» Don’t clutter up your life with other activities; just write.
»Don’t carry out a thorough and comprehensive search of the literature; just write.
» Don’t attempt to make sure that every page you write shows the full extent of your professional skills; just write.
» Don’t write a well-organized, well-integrated, unified dissertation; just write.» Don’t think profound thoughts that shake the intellectual foundations of the discipline; just write.
» If you don’t have a paper started by the spring of your third year, be alarmed.
» If you don’t have a paper largely drafted by the fall of your fourth year, panic.
» Have three new ideas a week while you are getting started.
» Don’t try to game the profession, work on what interests you.
» Good papers in economics have three characteristics:
– A viewpoint.
– A lever.
– A result.