There are many things I find unsurprising about Robert Orisko’s claims in the Georgetown Public Policy Review about hiring patterns in academic political science. Among those are the disparate reactions produced by its summary in Inside Higher Education.
In brief, Orisko argues that academic political-science hiring displays dynamics more associated with status-conserving cliques than an efficient market. This tracks with (more sophisticated) comparative studies of hiring patterns which suggest variation across different disciplines. As Kieran Healy discussed of the earlier study back in 2003, “placement is deeply embedded in systems of departmental status that bear little resemblance to a properly functioning market.”