As the various disciplines have different forms of social and intellectual organization (Whitley 2000), scholars in various fields may depend less on their peers, and more on other audiences for recognition and funding. Following Merton (1973) we distinguish between performance and reputation for building up recognition. We show that there are indeed differences between the disciplines: in life sciences and social sciences, the reputation related indicators are dominant in predicting the score that grant applicants get from the panel, whereas in the natural sciences, the performance related indicators dominate the panel scores. Furthermore, when comparing within the life sciences the grantees with the best performing non-grantees, we show that the former score higher on the reputation indicators and the second score better on the performance variables, supporting the findings that in life sciences one probably gains recognition over reputation more than over individual performance. We suggest that this may not be optimal for the growth of knowledge.