nep-cul New Economics Papers
on Cultural Economics
Issue of 2020‒10‒05
three papers chosen by
Roberto Zanola
Università degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale

  1. Expanding the Measurement of Culture with a Sample of Two Billion Humans By Nick Obradovich; Ömer Özak; Ignacio Martín; Ignacio Ortuño-Ortín; Edmond Awad; Manuel Cebrián; Rubén Cuevas; Klaus Desmet; Iyad Rahwan; Ángel Cuevas
  2. Migration and Cultural Change By Sulin Sardoschau; Arthur Silve; Hillel Rapoport
  3. Preferences of Prospective Visitors for Nature-Based Recreational Activities in the Salamanca Island Protected Area, Colombia By Andrés Vargas Pérez; David Díaz Florián; Tatiana Cantillo

  1. By: Nick Obradovich; Ömer Özak; Ignacio Martín; Ignacio Ortuño-Ortín; Edmond Awad; Manuel Cebrián; Rubén Cuevas; Klaus Desmet; Iyad Rahwan; Ángel Cuevas
    Abstract: Culture has played a pivotal role in human evolution. Yet, the ability of social scientists to study culture is limited by the currently available measurement instruments. Scholars of culture must regularly choose between scalable but sparse survey-based methods or restricted but rich ethnographic methods. Here, we demonstrate that massive online social networks can advance the study of human culture by providing quantitative, scalable, and high-resolution measurement of behaviorally revealed cultural values and preferences. We employ publicly available data across nearly 60,000 topic dimensions drawn from two billion Facebook users across 225 countries and territories. We first validate that cultural distances calculated from this measurement instrument correspond to traditional survey-based and objective measures of cross-national cultural differences. We then demonstrate that this expanded measure enables rich insight into the cultural landscape globally at previously impossible resolution. We analyze the importance of national borders in shaping culture, explore unique cultural markers that identify subnational population groups, and compare subnational divisiveness to gender divisiveness across countries. The global collection of massive data on human behavior provides a high-dimensional complement to traditional cultural metrics. Further, the granularity of the measure presents enormous promise to advance scholars' understanding of additional fundamental questions in the social sciences. The measure enables detailed investigation into the geopolitical stability of countries, social cleavages within both small and large-scale human groups, the integration of migrant populations, and the disaffection of certain population groups from the political process, among myriad other potential future applications.
    JEL: C80 J10 J16 O10 R10 Z10
    Date: 2020–09
  2. By: Sulin Sardoschau; Arthur Silve; Hillel Rapoport
    Abstract: We examine both theoretically and empirically how migration affects cultural change in home and host countries. Our theoretical model integrates various compositional and cultural transmission mechanisms of migration-based cultural change for which it delivers distinctive testable predictions on the sign and direction of convergence. We then use the World Value Survey for the period 1981-2014 to build time-varying measures of cultural similarity for a large number of country pairs and exploit within country-pair variation over time. Our evidence is inconsistent with the view that immigrants are a threat to the host country’s culture. While migrants do act as vectors of cultural diffusion and bring about cultural convergence, this is mostly to disseminate cultural values and norms from host to home countries (i.e., cultural remittances).
    Keywords: migration, cultural change, globalization
    JEL: F22 Z10
    Date: 2020
  3. By: Andrés Vargas Pérez; David Díaz Florián; Tatiana Cantillo
    Abstract: To develop financially viable, nature-based tourism, in protected areas, park managers need to make decisions as to what outdoor recreational activities should be offered. Using a discrete choice experiment (DCE), we estimate domestic prospective visitors’ willingness to pay (WTP) for a range of recreational activities and identify those with the greatest potential to attract visitors to Vía Parque Isla de Salamanca, a protected area (PA) in the Barranquilla-Santa Marta region, Colombia. We considered five activities offered by the PA: birding, cultural exchange, nautical sports, walking tours on the beach, and a mangrove boat tour. Results revealed that respondents have strong preferences for cultural exchange activities, while the activities prioritized by PA managers, birding and mangrove boat tours, are the least preferred by respondents. These results suggest that bundling strategies for nature-based tourist products in the PA may be needed to compensate for these unexpected visitor preferences. These results illustrate the usefulness of DCE to inform the design of nature-based tourism strategies in protected areas.
    Keywords: discrete choice experiment; nature-based tourism; outdoor activities; protected areas, bundling tourist products.
    Date: 2020–09–11

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