nep-cul New Economics Papers
on Cultural Economics
Issue of 2018‒03‒26
four papers chosen by
Roberto Zanola
Università degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale

  1. An analysis of the art and craft sector and its potential for sustainable tourism development in the Caribbean By Phillips, Willard; Indar, Delena; Thorme, Elizabeth
  2. "Cultural additivity" and how the values and norms of Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism co-exist, interact, and influence Vietnamese society: A Bayesian analysis of long-standing folktales, using R and Stan By Quan-Hoang Vuong; Manh Tung M.T. Ho; Viet-Phuong La; Van Nhue Dam; Bui Quang Khiem; Nghiem Phu Kien Cuong; Thu-Trang Vuong; Hong Kong Nguyen; Ha Viet Nguyen; Hiep-Hung Pham; Nancy K. Napier
  3. War of the Waves: Radio and Resistance During World War II By Gagliarducci, Stefano; Onorato, Massimiliano; Sobbrio, Francesco; Tabellini, Guido
  4. Religion and the European Union By Benito Arruñada; Matthias Krapf

  1. By: Phillips, Willard; Indar, Delena; Thorme, Elizabeth
    Abstract: Art and craft is considered to be an integral part of the tourism business, since it plays an important role as souvenirs and mementos, thereby spatially and temporarily expanding the visitor experience. It is also increasingly looked upon as an opportunity to diversify the tourism sector offerings, as well as the broader economic base. As part of the overall global creative economy, the art and craft sector has seen consistent trade growth over the past two decades, and has shown the capacity to forge even stronger linkages with the tourism sector. This paper examines the nature of this relationship in the particular context of the Caribbean, by undertaking a survey of the sub-regional art and craft sector, as well as a case study value chain analysis of two Caribbean countries-Saint Lucia and Trinidad and Tobago. The findings confirm that art and craft holds significant potential for bolstering the regional tourism economy. Moreover, the dynamics of the tourism sector appear, in turn, to provide a good driver for the future development of the sub-sector.
    Date: 2017–12–31
  2. By: Quan-Hoang Vuong; Manh Tung M.T. Ho; Viet-Phuong La; Van Nhue Dam; Bui Quang Khiem; Nghiem Phu Kien Cuong; Thu-Trang Vuong; Hong Kong Nguyen; Ha Viet Nguyen; Hiep-Hung Pham; Nancy K. Napier
    Abstract: Every year, the Vietnamese people reportedly burned about 50,000 tons of joss papers, which took the form of not only bank notes, but iPhones, cars, clothes, even housekeepers, in hope of pleasing the dead. The practice was mistakenly attributed to traditional Buddhist teachings but originated in fact from China, which most Vietnamese were not aware of. In other aspects of life, there were many similar examples of Vietnamese so ready and comfortable with adding new norms, values, and beliefs, even contradictory ones, to their culture. This phenomenon, dubbed "cultural additivity", prompted us to study the co-existence, interaction, and influences among core values and norms of the Three Teachings –Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism–as shown through Vietnamese folktales. By applying Bayesian logistic regression, we evaluated the possibility of whether the key message of a story was dominated by a religion (dependent variables), as affected by the appearance of values and anti-values pertaining to the Three Teachings in the story (independent variables). Our main findings included the existence of the cultural additivity of Confucian and Taoist values. More specifically, empirical results showed that the interaction or addition of the values of Taoism and Confucianism in folktales together helped predict whether the key message of a story was about Confucianism, β{VT ⋅ VC} = 0.86. Meanwhile, there was no such statistical tendency for Buddhism. The results lead to a number of important implications. First, this showed the dominance of Confucianism because the fact that Confucian and Taoist values appeared together in a story led to the story’s key message dominated by Confucianism. Thus, it presented the evidence of Confucian dominance and against liberal interpretations of the concept of the Common Roots of Three Religions ("tam giáo đồng nguyên") as religious unification or unicity. Second, the concept of "cultural additivity" could help explain many interesting socio-cultural phenomena, namely the absence of religious intolerance and extremism in the Vietnamese society, outrageous cases of sophistry in education, the low productivity in creative endeavors like science and technology, the misleading branding strategy in business. We are aware that our results are only preliminary and more studies, both theoretical and empirical, must be carried out to give a full account of the explanatory reach of "cultural additivity".
    Keywords: Confucianism; Buddhism; Taoism; Three Religions; cultural additivity; Vietnamese culture; folktales; social norms; values; beliefs; ideals
    JEL: A13 M14
    Date: 2018–03–14
  3. By: Gagliarducci, Stefano; Onorato, Massimiliano; Sobbrio, Francesco; Tabellini, Guido
    Abstract: What is the role of the media in coordinating and mobilizing insurgency against a foreign military occupation? We analyze this question in the context of the Nazi-fascist occupation of Italy during WWII. We study the effect of BBC radio counter-propaganda (Radio Londra) on the intensity of internal resistance to the Nazi-fascist regime. Using variation in monthly sunspot activities affecting the sky-wave propagation of BBC broadcasting towards Italy, we show that BBC radio had a strong impact on political violence. We provide further evidence to prove that BBC radio played an important role in coordinating resistance activities, but had no lasting role in motivating the population against the fascist regime.
    Keywords: BBC; Counter-propaganda; Insurgency; media; Sunspots; Violence; WWII
    JEL: D74 L82 N44
    Date: 2018–02
  4. By: Benito Arruñada; Matthias Krapf
    Abstract: We review a recent literature on cultural differences across euro member states.We point out that this literature fails to address cultural differences between Protestants and Catholics, which are likely a major underlying reason for cross-country differences. We argue that confessional culture explains why Catholic countries tend to have weaker institutions but are more open to economic and political integration. EU policies after the economic crisis looked clumsy and failed to address all concerns, but were viable, caused only a manageable amount of serious backlash and tied in well with Europe’s cultural diversity, also providing scope for learning and adaption.
    Keywords: European Union, Religion, values, Culture
    JEL: Z12 F15
    Date: 2018–03

This nep-cul issue is ©2018 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.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.