nep-ltv New Economics Papers
on Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty
Issue of 2010‒10‒02
six papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
University of the Republic

  1. A New Model for Constructing Poverty Lines By Kakwani, Nanak
  2. Recent Advances in the Economics of Individual Subjective Well-Being By Bruno S. Frey
  3. The Solaria Syndrome: Social Capital in a Growing Hyper-technological Economy By Angelo Antoci; Fabio Sabatini; Mauro Sodini
  4. Fairness and Cheating By Daniel Houser; Stefan Vetter; Joachim Winter
  5. Education choices in Mexico: using a structural model and a randomized experiment to evaluate Progresa By Orazio Attanasio; Costas Meghir; Ana Santiago
  6. School Competition and Efficiency with Publicly Funded Catholic Schools By Card, David; Dooley, Martin; Payne, Abigail

  1. By: Kakwani, Nanak
    Abstract: In this paper, we present a new model for constructing poverty lines. The model uses consumer theory to construct both food and nonfood poverty thresholds. Although one cannot completely eliminate the value judgments inherent in the construction of poverty thresholds, this model helps to make the ad hoc assumptions that are generally made more justifiable. The model ensures that poverty line is consistent across regions. The methodology developed in the paper is used to illustrate the construction of poverty thresholds in Pakistan.
    Keywords: economies of scale, poverty measures, poverty line, consistent poverty line, consumer theory, calorie cost
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:phd:dpaper:dp_2010-06&r=ltv
  2. By: Bruno S. Frey (University of Basel)
    Abstract: Over the last decades, empirical research on subjective well-being in the social<br />sciences has provided a major new stimulus to the discourse on individual happiness.<br />Recently this research has also been linked to economics where reported subjective wellbeing<br />is often taken as a proxy measure for individual welfare. In our review, we intend to<br />provide an evaluation of where the economic research on happiness stands and of three<br />directions it might develop. First, it offers new ways for testing the basic assumptions of the<br />economic approach and for going about a new understanding of utility. Second, it provides a<br />new possibility for the complementary testing of theories across fields in economics. Third,<br />we inquire how the insights gained from the study of individual happiness in economics affect<br />public policy.<br />Keywords: Economics, happiness, life satisfaction, survey data, income, public goods,<br />unemployment<br />JEL Classifications: A10, D60, H41, I31
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:bsl:wpaper:04/10&r=ltv
  3. By: Angelo Antoci (Università di Sassari); Fabio Sabatini (Università di Siena); Mauro Sodini (Università di Pisa)
    Abstract: We develop a dynamic model to analyze the sources and the evolution of social participation and social capital in a growing economy characterized by exogenous technical progress. Starting from the assumption that the well-being of agents basically depends on material and relational goods, we show that the best-case scenarios hold when technology and social capital both support just one of the two productions at the expenses of the other. However, trajectories are possible where technology and social interaction balance one another in fostering the growth of both the social and the private sector of the economy. Along such tracks, technology may play a crucial role in supporting a “socially sustainable” economic growth.
    Keywords: Technology, Economic Growth, Relational Goods, Social Participation, Social Capital
    JEL: O33 J22 O41 Z13
    Date: 2010–07
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:fem:femwpa:2010.100&r=ltv
  4. By: Daniel Houser (George Mason University); Stefan Vetter (University of Munich); Joachim Winter (University of Munich)
    Abstract: We present evidence from a laboratory experiment showing that individuals who believe they were treated unfairly in an interaction with another person are more likely to cheat in a subsequent unrelated game. Specifically, subjects first participated in a dictator game. They then flipped a coin in private and reported the outcome. Subjects could increase their total payoff by cheating, i.e., lying about the outcome of the coin toss. We found that subjects were more likely to cheat in reporting the outcome of the coin flip when: 1) they received either nothing or a very small transfer from the dictator; and 2) they claimed to have been treated unfairly. This is consistent with the view that experiencing a norm violation is sufficient to justify the violation of another norm at the expense of a third party. This result extends the growing literature on social norms.
    Keywords: cheating; social norms; experimental design
    JEL: C91 D63
    Date: 2010–09
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:trf:wpaper:335&r=ltv
  5. By: Orazio Attanasio (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College London); Costas Meghir (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College London); Ana Santiago (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Inter-American Development Bank)
    Abstract: <p><p><p>In this paper we use an economic model to analyse data from a major social experiment, namely PROGRESA in Mexico, and to evaluate its impact on school participation. In the process we also show the usefulness of using experimental data to estimate a structural economic model. The evaluation sample includes data from villages where the program was implemented and where it was not. The allocation was randomised for evaluation purposes. We estimate a structural model of education choices and argue that without such a framework it is impossible to evaluate the effect of the program and, especially, possible changes to its structure. We also argue that the randomized component of the data allows us to identify a more flexible model that is better suited to evaluate the program. We find that the program has a positive effect on the enrollment of children, especially after primary school; this result is well replicated by the parsimonious structural model. We also find that a revenue neutral change in the program that would increase the grant for secondary school children while eliminating for the primary school children would have a substantially larger effect on enrollment of the latter, while having minor effects on the former.</p></p></p>
    Date: 2010–09
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:10/14&r=ltv
  6. By: Card, David; Dooley, Martin; Payne, Abigail
    Abstract: The province of Ontario has two publicly funded school systems: secular schools (known as public schools) that are open to all students, and separate schools that are limited to children with Catholic backgrounds. A simple model of inter-system competition predicts that incentives for effort are higher in areas where there are more Catholic families who are relatively uncommitted to one system or the other. We measure the willingness of Catholic families to switch systems by studying the effect of school openings on enrollment at nearby schools in the competing system. The results suggest that families in rapidly growing areas have the weakest attachment to a particular system. We then relate student test score gains between 3rd and 6th grade to measures of potential cross-system competition. We find that competition for Catholic students has a significant effect on test outcomes in both systems, particularly in fast-growing areas. Our estimates imply that expanding competition to all students would raise average test scores in 6th grade by 6-8% of a standard deviation.
    Keywords: School Competition, School Choice, Student Performance
    JEL: I20 I21 H41
    Date: 2010–09–23
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:ubc:clssrn:clsrn_admin-2010-28&r=ltv

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