New Economics Papers
on Law and Economics
Issue of 2014‒02‒15
eight papers chosen by
Eve-Angeline Lambert, Université de Lorraine

  1. Risk Aversion and the Desirability of Attenuated Legal Change By Steven Shavell
  2. An Experiment on Protecting Intellectual Property By Joy Buchanan; Bart Wilson
  3. Lessons from the economics of crime By Philip J. Cook; Stephen Machin; Olivier Marie; Giovanni Mastrobuoni
  4. Illegal Waste Disposal, Territorial Enforcement and Policy. Evidence from regional data. By Alessio D’Amato; Massimiliano Mazzanti; Francesco Nicolli; Mariangela Zoli
  5. Seasonality in smoking behaviour: re-evaluating the effects of the 2005 public smoking ban in Italy By Del Bono, Emilia; Grunberger, Klaus; Vuri, Daniela
  6. The Effect of Restorative Juvenile Justice on Future Educational Outcomes By Rud, I.; Van Klaveren, C.; Groot, W., and Maassen van den Brink, H.
  7. Labor market upheaval, default regulations, and consumer debt By Athreya, Kartik B.; Sanchez, Juan M.; Tam, Xuan S.; Young, Eric R.
  8. Eco-regional Cartels on the Genetic Resource Market and the case of the Andean Community's legislation By Winands, Sarah; Holm-Müller, Karin

  1. By: Steven Shavell
    Abstract: This article develops two points. First, insurance against the risk of legal change is largely unavailable, primarily because of the correlated nature of the losses that legal change generates. Second, given the absence of insurance against legal change, it is generally desirable for legal change to be attenuated. Specifically, in a model of uncertainty about two different types of legal change—in regulatory standards, and in payments for harm caused—it is demonstrated that the optimal new regulatory standard is less than the conventionally efficient standard, and that the optimal new payment for harm is less than the harm.
    JEL: H8 K10 K20
    Date: 2014–02
  2. By: Joy Buchanan (Interdisciplinary Center for Economic Science and Department of Economics, George Mason University); Bart Wilson (Economic Science Institute, Chapman University)
    Abstract: We conduct a laboratory experiment to explore whether the protection of intellectual property (IP) incentivizes people to create non-rivalrous knowledge goods, foregoing the production of other rivalrous goods. In the contrasting treatment with no IP protection, participants are free to resell and remake non-rivalrous knowledge goods originally created by others. We find that creators reap substantial profits when IP is protected and that rampant pirating is common when there is no IP protection, but IP protection in and of itself is neither necessary nor sufficient for generating wealth from the discovery of knowledge goods. Rather, individual entrepreneurship is the key. Length: 36
    Keywords: intellectual property, experimental economics
    JEL: C92 D89 K39
    Date: 2014–02
  3. By: Philip J. Cook; Stephen Machin; Olivier Marie; Giovanni Mastrobuoni
    Abstract: Olivier Marie explains the value of an economic approach to the analysis, design and evaluation of crime-fighting policies.
    Keywords: Crime, offenders, crime control, cost-benefit analysis
    JEL: I2 K42 H00 J65
    Date: 2014–02
  4. By: Alessio D’Amato (DEF and CEIS, Univesità di Roma Tor Vergata and SEEDS (Italy).); Massimiliano Mazzanti (Departiment of Economics, Università di Ferrara (italy).); Francesco Nicolli (Ceris-CNR, Institute for Economic Research on Firms and Growth, National Research Council of Italy.); Mariangela Zoli (DEF and CEIS, Univesità di Roma Tor Vergata and SEEDS (Italy).)
    Abstract: This paper investigates if and how illegal disposal of waste is affected by the decentralized waste management commitment of local governments and by enforcement policies. On the basis of a panel dataset at the Italian provincial level that originally integrates waste, economic, policy and enforcement data, our empirical analysis presents two main insights. First, a more diffuse commitment towards incentive based waste policy tends to increase illegal disposal. Second, a non-linear bell shaped relationship exists between enforcement and illegal disposal, namely deterrence only results after a (relatively high) level of controls is implemented.
    Keywords: waste management, illegal disposal, forestry corps, enforcement, regional settings, waste tariffs, ecological-economic data.
    JEL: Q53 K42 D73
    Date: 2014–01
  5. By: Del Bono, Emilia; Grunberger, Klaus; Vuri, Daniela
    Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of the public smoking ban which came into effect in Italy on January 2005 on individual smoking behaviour. Current empirical evidence supports the existence of a negative effect of the Italian ban on smoking prevalence and consumption in the general population. This is in contrast to what has been found in some other European coun- tries. Our analysis shows that the apparent success of the Italian smoking ban is due to the fact that existing results do not take into account seasonal differences in smoking behaviour. Using quarterly data from the 1999/2000 and 2004/2005 Italian Health Surveys and adopting a difference-in-difference approach that nets out monthly variation in smoking rates, we show that the Italian smoking ban had no impact on individual smoking behaviour for the population as a whole, and only small effects on some groups of individuals.
    Date: 2014–02–11
  6. By: Rud, I.; Van Klaveren, C.; Groot, W., and Maassen van den Brink, H.
    Keywords: Restorative Justice, Education, Juvenile Crime, Field Experiment
    JEL: I2 K4 C93
    Date: 2014
  7. By: Athreya, Kartik B. (Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond); Sanchez, Juan M. (Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis); Tam, Xuan S. (City University of Hong Kong); Young, Eric R. (University of Virginia)
    Abstract: In 2005, bankruptcy laws were reformed significantly, making personal bankruptcy substantially more costly to file than before. Shortly after, the US began to experience its most severe recession in seventy years. While personal bankruptcy rates rose, they rose only modestly given the severity of the rise in unemployment, perhaps as a consequence of the reform. Moreover, in the subsequent recovery, households have been widely viewed as “develeraging” (Mian and Sufi (2011), Krugman and Eggertson (2012)), an interpretation consistent with the largest reduction in the volume of unsecured debt in the past three decades. In this paper, we aim to measure the role jointly played by recent bankruptcy reforms and labor market risks during the Great Recession in accounting for the use of consumer credit and debt default. We use a setting that features high-frequency life-cycle consumption-savings decisions, defaultable debt, search frictions, and aggregate risk. Our results suggest that the 2005 bankruptcy reform likely prevented a substantial increase in bankruptcy filings, but had only limited effect on the observed path of delinquencies. Thus, the reform appears to have “worked.” We also find that fluctuations in the job separation rate observed over the Great Recession did not significantly affect the dynamics of default; all of the work is done, instead, by the large decline in the job-finding rate.
    JEL: D9 E21 K35
    Date: 2014–02–01
  8. By: Winands, Sarah; Holm-Müller, Karin
    Abstract: The United Nations' Convention on Biological Diversity raised expectations of high benefits in genetic resource trade with megadiverse countries. As a reaction the Andean Community (CAN) passed strict community access legislation. Against this background the main objective of this paper is to investigate whether public eco-regional cartels of megadiverse countries on the genetic resource market can increase the appropriable benefits from biodiversity. We analyse how cartel design affects cartel benefits and discuss the benefit distribution among cartel members. As a case study we examine the CAN community access legislation (Decision 391) in the light of biodiversity collusion. Our main finding is that cartels-contrary to their negative connotation-are potentially able to stimulate genetic resource trade, increase the providers' appropriable benefits from biodiversity, and reduce the costs for customers. This depends largely on the cartel design and the ability to attract bioprospecting agents. A member's benefit share rises in the member's relative biodiversity richness and even more in the quality of the institutional environment. The CAN collusion nullifies its market power by a deterringly overly strict access regulation and a lack of internal cooperation.
    Keywords: cartel formation, genetic resource market, Andean Community, CBD, institutional analysis, Environmental Economics and Policy, Industrial Organization, Institutional and Behavioral Economics, International Relations/Trade, Political Economy, F53, K23, Q27, Q28, Q57,
    Date: 2014–01–30

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