Nothing, however, captures my misgivings about rankings more than an interaction today. I was discussing Ted Seto's lastest post on SSRN downloads (leaving out the top three downloadees) with two colleagues at different times. We were wondering, as usual, why our school is not ranked higher. The reaction of one: "This means we need to produce more articles." The reaction of the other: "How can we increase our SSRN visibility."
There is a difference. One is the dog doing what dogs are supposed to do. The other is yet another version of doing something new or different because the SSNR ranking exists.
SSNR downloads, yet another tail to be wagged by.