nep-cul New Economics Papers
on Cultural Economics
Issue of 2008‒01‒19
four papers chosen by
Roberto Zanola
University of the Piemonte Orientale

  1. And the Oscar goes to ..... Peeeeedrooooo! By Henry Aray; Luis Manuel García
  2. Performance of the Arabic Book Translation Industry in Selected Arab Countries: Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi-Arabia and Syria By Harabi, Najib
  3. Emergent Cultural Phenomena and their Cognitive Foundations By C. Cordes
  4. Television and Political Persuasion in Young Democracies: Evidence from Russia By Ruben Enikolopov; Maria Petrova; Ekaterina Zhuravskaya

  1. By: Henry Aray (Department of Economic Theory and Economic History, University of Granada.); Luis Manuel García (Department of Economic Theory and Economic History, University of Granada.)
    Abstract: This article analyzes the effect of awards on the Spanish motion picture industry. We are interested in how production of both com¬pletely Spanish and coproduced films react to an Oscar award. We estimate a seemingly unrelated regression model controlling for the effect of other media, changes in the legislation governing Spanish cinema and business cycles. We find positive effects among the coefficients of the variables related to the Oscar significant up to the 10% level, with the highest coefficients being for films produced by Pedro Almodovar. We carry out a battery of tests and our findings suggest that completely Spanish movie production does not react to Oscar awards. However, the production of movies in association with foreign partners (coproduction) is positively affected though the effect differs for each Oscar.
    Keywords: Movie production, SUR model, Oscar Awards.
    JEL: Z12 C11
    Date: 2008–01–14
  2. By: Harabi, Najib
    Abstract: Knowledge has always been at the heart of economic growth and development. It is disseminated chiefly through the different stages of education, R&D, the mass media and the translation industry. In Arab countries there has been a widespread impression that there is a low level of translation activities, which in turn has led to a low output of the translation industry in those countries. This research project addresses this issue; its overall objectives are (1) to describe the economic performance of the Arabic book translation industry in Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, and Syria; (2) to understand empirically the economic performance of that industry, the focus here being on qualitatively analyzing the major determinants (positive and negative factors) affecting the growth process of that industry; and (3) to provide policy makers and business leaders in the Arab region with theoretically sound and evidence-based advice on the issues analyzed in the project. To provide an empirical base for answering those questions, both published data and fresh new data have been used. For the latter purpose, a questionnaire-based survey was conducted in the year 2005 among 190 experts, covering firm representatives and experts in industry and government. The Porter (Diamond) model has been used as a theoretical background. The empirical results were incorporated in five national case studies. In addition, a synthesis of the results of the national reports gives a comparative account of the performance of the Arabic book translation industry in the five Arab countries
    Keywords: Book industry; Arabic book; Arab countries; Egypt; Morocco; Lebanon; Syria; Saudi-Arabia; translation; Arabic translation
    JEL: L89 Z11
    Date: 2007–12
  3. By: C. Cordes
    Abstract: To explain emergent cultural phenomena, this paper argues, it is inevitable to understand the evolution of complex human cognitive adaptations and their links to the population-level dynamics of cultural variation. On the one hand, the process of cultural transmission is influenced and constrained by humans’ evolved psychology; people tend to acquire some cultural variants rather than others. On the other hand, the cultural environment provides cultural variants that are transmitted to or adopted by individuals via processes of social learning. To gain insights into this recursive relationship between individual cognitive dispositions at the micro level and cultural phenomena at the macro level, the theory of gene-culture coevolution is applied. Moreover, a model of cultural evolution demonstrates the dissemination of novelty within a population via biased social learning processes. As a result, some unique facets of human behavior and cumulative cultural evolution are identified.
    Keywords: Cultural Evolution, Social Learning, Diffusion Dynamics, Coevolution, Evolutionary Economics Length 22 pages
    Date: 2007–12
  4. By: Ruben Enikolopov (Harvard University); Maria Petrova (Harvard University); Ekaterina Zhuravskaya (New Economic School (NES), Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR), Center for Economic Policy Research (CEPR))
    Abstract: Governments control media in much of the developing world. Does this have an effect on political choices of voters? We address this question using exogenous variation in the availability of the signal of the only independent from the government national TV channel in Russia during the 1999 parliamentary elections. We find that the presence of an independent source of political news on TV significantly decreased the vote in favor of the government party and increased the vote in favor of the opposition parties. We find that the difference in TV coverage significantly changed voting behavior even controlling for voters’ inclinations just one month prior to the elections. The effects we find are larger than those found in established democracies.
    Date: 2007–12

This nep-cul issue is ©2008 by Roberto Zanola. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
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