"Hail Tyler Cowen"

This is as astute an explanation as you'll find of how a blogger can make his mark:

Tyler Cowen is under-appreciated.  Not as a blogger of course, he writes the most popular blog in economics and one of the most popular blogs full stop.  It may sound strange, especially to readers of Marginal Revolution, but Tyler Cowen is an under-appreciated economist.  Here is his CV.  Here is his google scholar listing.  Here is the ranking of his economics department.  If it were not for Marginal Revolution, very few economists would know who Tyler Cowen is.

But we all read Marginal Revolution.  And we all know that Tyler Cowen is smarter, broader, more knowledgeable, more intuitive than most of us and our colleagues.  If he wanted it to, his CV could run circles around ours.  I don’t claim to know why he doesn’t want that, but I infer that Tyler believes he is innovating a new way to be a successful and influential economist without compromising on the very high standards that those of us in the old regime hold.

Public signals like Google scholar cites, and top-journal publications can’t measure Tyler Cowen’s contribution to economics but we measure it privately every day when we read Marginal Revolution.  And it deserves to be made public:  Tyler Cowen is a great economist.