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Lotka's law

The highly skewed distribution of creative contributions has been formulated as a social scientific law by Alfred James Lotka (1926). According to this law, the number of scientists publishing exactly n papers is roughly proportional to 1/n2, where the proportionality constant varies with the discipline. Lotka's law is remarkably similar to Pareto's law of income distribution (Price, 1963), by which cumulative figures for personal earnings, as assessed in several nations over a long period of time, tend to be proportional to 1/n15. As Simonton (1984: 80) comments, "There exists a provocative isomorphism between cultural creativity and economic leadership such that the intellectual hegemony of an Einstein compares with the material monopoly of a Rockefeller."

Lotka's law. Dictionary of Creativity: Terms, Concepts, Theories & Findings in Creativity Research / Compiled and edited by Eugene Gorny., 2007.
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