Few people outside of academic economists have ever heard of the National Bureau of Economic Research (N.B.E.R.). Within the profession, however, it plays an enormously important role as an information clearinghouse. Through a series of well-attended conferences and the ubiquitous, yellow-jacketed N.B.E.R. Working Paper series (which, by my estimates, may contain more than 13,000 papers by now), the N.B.E.R. serves . . .