I have been teaching economics in a university for the past 5 years and, before that, working in the area of economics for the past 15 or so years. 20 years ago, before I studied economics, I studied French literature. Recently, I dug up my master's thesis in literature, updated and polished it, and then submitted. One of the top journals (generally considered top 5) in the subject area accepted it. I am wondering now whether I should include the article on my CV when I apply for economics teaching jobs, or even on my profile page of my current institution. I am worried it might look weird. I have some good economics articles too, so it's not that I am lacking good publications. Any thoughts? Thank you.

  • Is having a wider area of interest regarded as sth bad in economics? Weird.
    – Karl
    Nov 25, 2017 at 21:04
  • @Karl The problem is that economists publish relatively infrequently. It is not at all unusual for someone 5 years out of a PhD to 'only' have 3 or 4 (economics) publications if they are targeting good outlets. It's one thing to have a literature publications somewhere among a list of 30 papers. But when the paper is 25% of your published research output, it might be a bit more of a distraction.
    – Ubiquitous
    Nov 27, 2017 at 13:45

2 Answers 2


It’s your work, and you’ve published it, so on ethical and completeness grounds, you should include this publication on your CV.

If you wish to indicate that it’s not an active area of interest, you could always list it separately in your CV as “Other Publications,” “Publications from Master’s Degree Studies,” or something to similar effect.

  • @PD3 definitely, it's yours, reflects your skills so belongs on your CV...
    – Solar Mike
    Nov 25, 2017 at 21:26
  • 2
    I disagree. The CV should contain relevant information to whatever it is used for. Non-relevant things can/should be left out (e.g. information about supervising undergrads while applying for a position with no teaching at all). In addition, CVs might get incredible long so you need to select the relevant information anyways. Especially for publications it is very common to show only a selection of the most relevant publications.
    – user64845
    Nov 26, 2017 at 12:56
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    @DSVA: That’s the difference between a CV and a resumé: the latter is tailored to circumstances, the former document is as long as it is. You do not “select the most relevant publications” in a CV: that’s a bio sketch for a grant application.
    – aeismail
    Nov 26, 2017 at 15:36
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    @aeismail so you are telling me people have 30+ pages CVs and send them in for applications where people spend less than a minute with the CV? I'm just at the beginning of my Postdoc but my CV would be 8+ pages if I put in everything. Common (and recommendet by most guides) are 2-5 pages and every guide I've read recommends tailoring the CV to the position you are applying for. (But there might be differences for different countries, environments and academic fields)
    – user64845
    Nov 26, 2017 at 15:47
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    I've served on search committees where people sent in 8 to 10 page CV's. People with 30+-page CV's (and there are some) probably do not have to do wide-spectrum job searches. But if they are applying for positions, they would send the entire CV!
    – aeismail
    Nov 26, 2017 at 16:25

As an economist who occasionally reads the applications of potential new members of faculty, it is fairly common for me to see job files with papers from other disciplines on the CV. But those other disciplines are usually hang-overs from a previous specialization in another technical subject like math, physics, etc.

A paper on French Literature would be indeed a little unusual. But provided you have some good econ publications, I don't think anyone would count the literature piece against you. The main thing is to make sure that it doesn't distract anyone from your 'real' output. For this reason, I think the suggestion to create a separate section for "Miscellaneous other publications" toward the bottom of your CV is a good one.

That's if you want to include it at all. I don't think it would be problematic to omit it from your CV altogether when applying for Econ jobs. Recruitment committees will expect to see relevant qualifications for the post on your CV, not a complete list of every irrelevant thing you have done in your lifetime.

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