Mark Crain smilesMark Crain, William E. Simon Professor of Political Economy and chair of policy studies, has been named to’s 2023 ranking of best scientists in the field of political science in the United States and globally.

The listing credits Crain’s focuses on property rights, regulation, legislatures, and politics, and cites his academic work and recent research. 

To create the 2023 report, examined more than 1,300 profiles from sources such as OpenAlex and CrossRef, as well as other bibliometric databases. It used several metrics to evaluate the profiles, including the percentage of contributions made in the relevant field, notable awards, and achievements. uses the Hirsch index (H-index) in its rankings, which captures research output based on the total number of publications and total number of citations to those works. This index counted 75 of Crain’s publications in the field of political science, and 3,292 citations to these publications. 

Crain achieved a national ranking of 454 and a global ranking of 814, both slightly higher than where he placed in the 2022 rankings. (See 2023 world ranking, see U.S. ranking.)  

“Please accept our sincere congratulations. Being present in our ranking is definitely a great achievement for you and your university or research institution,” Imed Bouchrika, founder of, wrote to Crain via email.

Political science is just one area of research for Crain, whose published works—more than 125 articles and 10 books—focus largely on interdisciplinary topics at the intersection of economics and politics.

“I’m honored to once again appear in a listing that includes so many prominent and influential peers,” he says. “It enhances the reputation of Lafayette’s economics and policy studies programs, and encourages students to take a multidisciplinary approach to thinking about the world’s great challenges. It taps into the College’s rich liberal arts tradition, which transcends academic boundaries.” 

Crain’s creative ventures at Lafayette include the student-produced Lafayette Lens, an hourlong series in collaboration with PBS39, the Lehigh Valley’s public television station, that covers issues of global importance, and a new podcast series, Past, Present and Future, featuring student interviews with prominent alumni with WLVR, the Lehigh Valley’s NPR station. He received the College’s 2023 Superior Teaching Award in Humanities and Social Sciences.

Crain came to Lafayette College in 2004 from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., where he had been a faculty member for many years and served as director of the Center for Study of Public Choice. His prior academic positions were at UCLA and Virginia Tech. He served in the Reagan administration in the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, and on numerous civic commissions at the federal, state, and local levels. is a research portal for science rankings. It maintains a database of more than 27,000 leading scientists to assist professors, research fellows, and those studying for a Ph.D. or a master’s degree to progress with their research and to ensure they are always up to date with the latest conferences around the world and publications related to their work. publishes an annual ranking of leading scientists in a wide range of scientific disciplines.


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