nep-evo New Economics Papers
on Evolutionary Economics
Issue of 2022‒01‒17
three papers chosen by
Matthew Baker
City University of New York

  1. Heterophily, Stable Matching, and Intergenerational Transmission in Cultural Evolution By Hiller, Victor; Wu, Jiabin; Zhang, Hanzhe
  2. Cultural Assimilation: Learning and Sorting By Monteiro, Stein
  3. A Resolution of St. Petersburg Paradox By V. I. Yukalov

  1. By: Hiller, Victor (Universite Paris II Pantheon-Assas (LEMMA), Paris, France); Wu, Jiabin (Department of Economics, University of Oregon, Eugune, OR); Zhang, Hanzhe (Michigan State University, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: We demonstrate that marital preferences, the marriage market, and intergenerational transmission mechanisms must be jointly considered to gain a more complete picture of cultural evolution. We characterize cultural processes in settings with different combinations of (i) homophilic and heterophilic marital preferences, (ii) men-optimal or women-optimal stable matching scheme, and (iii) familial, societal, and rational forces of intergenerational transmission. First, with perfect vertical transmission in homogamies and oblique transmission in heterogamies, the presence of even a small fraction of heterophilic proposers leads to complete cultural homogeneity; cultural heterogeneity arises only when proposers are all homophilic. Notably, a stable matching scheme that is optimal for a gender in the short run can lead to suboptimal outcomes for them in the long run. Second, when transmission in heterogamies incorporates Darwinian consideration, persistent or temporary cycles between cultural homogeneity and heterogeneity may arise. Third, with imperfect vertical transmission in homogamies, heterophilic preferences and heterogamies play a significant role in the determination of cultural distribution; cultural substitutability is neither sufficient nor necessary for cultural heterogeneity. Finally, we discuss our model's implications for matriarchal and patriarchal societies, the evolution of gender roles as well as cultural assimilation and identity formation of minorities and immigrants.
    Keywords: cultural evolution; marital preferences; stable matching; intergenerational cultural transmission; imitative dynamics; evolutionary game theory
    JEL: C73 C78 D10 Z10
    Date: 2021–12–31
  2. By: Monteiro, Stein
    Abstract: Immigration from poorer source countries is larger than from richer countries, so that poor country immigrants have greater exposure to co-ethnics, leading to fewer incentives to learn the local culture and assimilate. In this paper, the exposure channel through which source country richness affects assimilating immigration is modelled through neighbour-hood location choices and incentives to learn the local culture in the host country. Two equilibrium outcomes are identified, in which, there is either only assimilating immigration in at least one neighbourhood of the host country (sorting equilibrium) when immigration is from a rich source country, or there is some non-assimilating immigration in all neighbourhoods (mixed equilibrium) when immigration is from a poor source country. The presence of this exposure channel is tested using data from the Longitudinal Survey of Immigrants in Canada: waves 1-3. Learning, rather than sorting into co-ethnic communities, is the main factor operating in the exposure channel between source country richness and assimilating immigration.
    Keywords: Cultural Assimilation; Language Proficiency; Pre-immigration Experience; Ethnic Enclaves; Sorting; Exposure
    JEL: J61 Z1
    Date: 2021–06–28
  3. By: V. I. Yukalov
    Abstract: The St. Petersburg paradox is the oldest paradox in decision theory and has played a pivotal role in the introduction of increasing concave utility functions embodying risk aversion and decreasing marginal utility of gains. All attempts to resolve it have considered some variants of the original set-up, but the original paradox has remained unresolved, while the proposed variants have introduced new complications and problems. Here a rigorous mathematical resolution of the St. Petersburg paradox is suggested based on a probabilistic approach to decision theory.
    Date: 2021–11

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