A new form of discrimination
A fascinating article finds that the top economics departments have a disproportionate number of people with surnames that begin with letters that come early in the alphabet. The reason is that in economics joint papers are common and that the authors are listed in alphabetical order. As a result, people with letters that come late in the alphabet will not appear to be as prominent.
Einav, Liran and Leeat Yariv. 2006. “What’s in a Surname? The Effects of Surname Initials on Academic Success.” The Journal of Economic Perspectives, 20: 1 (Winter): pp. 175-88.