nep-soc New Economics Papers
on Social Norms and Social Capital
Issue of 2007‒04‒14
eleven papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
University of Rome, La Sapienza

  1. Social Norms By H. Peyton Young
  2. Social Normas and Household Time Allocation By Cristina Fernandez; Almudena Sevilla-Sanz
  3. Truth and Trust in Communication: An Experimental Study of Behavior under Asymmetric Information By Rode, Julian
  4. Effort and synergies in network formation By Antonio Cabrales; Antoni Calvo-Armengol; Yves Zenou
  5. Sorting in the Labor Market: Do Gregarious Workers Flock to Interactive Jobs? By Alan B. Krueger; David Schkade
  6. Violence in European schools : victimization and consequences By Ammermüller, Andreas
  7. Business ethics and corporate responsibility:a new perspective By Bhanu Murthy, K.V.
  8. Aggregation Reversals and the Social Formation of Beliefs By Edward L. Glaeser; Bruce Sacerdote
  9. R&D incentives, compatibility and network externalities By Cerquera Dussán, Daniel
  10. Ideas that Work - Building Communities Through Homeownership By HUD - PD&R
  11. Labour market job matching for UK minority ethnic groups By Shirley Dex; Jo Lindley

  1. By: H. Peyton Young
    Abstract: The function of a social norm is to coordinate people`s expectations in interactions that possess multiple equilibria. Norms govern a wide range of phenomena, including property rights, contracts, bargains, forms of communication, and concepts of justice. Norms impose uniformity of behavior within a given social group, but often vary substantially among groups. Over time norm shifts may occur, prompted either by changes in objective circumstances or by subjective changes in perceptions and expectations. The dynamics of this process can be modeled using evolutionary game theory, which predict that some norms are more stable than others in the long run.
    Keywords: Norms, Institutions, Equilibrium Selection
    JEL: C73 B52 K0
    Date: 2007
  2. By: Cristina Fernandez; Almudena Sevilla-Sanz
    Abstract: Economic theories of the household predict that increases in female relative human capital lead to decreases in female housework time. However, longitudinal and cross-sectional evidence seems to contradict this implication. Women`s share of home time fails to decrease despite increases in women`s relative earnings. The literature has proposed social norms on the household division of labor as an alternative explanation. We use the 2002-03 Spanish Time Use Survey (STUS) to explore the presence of social norms associated to the household division of housework and childcare. First, we observe that wives that earn more than their husbands still undertake more than 50% of housework and childcare. Second, we find that a woman`s relative share of housework decreases as her relative earnings increase, but only up to the point when she earns the same as her husband. Finally, independently of the definition of childcare, the relative time devoted to childcare does not vary with spouses` relative earnings. All these findings suggest that social norms might be an important factor in the division of household time.
    Keywords: Household Division of Labor, Childcare, Social Norms
    JEL: D13 J0 J1 J2 Z13
    Date: 2006
  3. By: Rode, Julian (Universitat Pompeu Fabra)
    Abstract: The paper presents an experimental study of truth telling and trust in communication under asymmetric information. In a two-player Communication Game (cf., Gneezy, 2005), an informed “advisor” sends a message to an uninformed “decision maker”, who then has to decide whether to follow the advice. The advisor may gain more by lying in the message. In two treatments, either a cooperative or a competitive context is induced before participants play the Communication Game. Advisors are unaffected by this contextual variation. In contrast, decision makers in the competitive context trust the advice less than in the cooperative context. The data provide evidence that this change in trust is due to different perceptions of the incentive structure. Individual differences in behavior can be related to certain personal characteristics (field of studies, gender, personality test scores). The data are largely in line with Subjective Equilibrium Analysis (Kalai & Lehrer, 1995).
    Keywords: experimental economics; truth telling; trust; asymmetric information; individual differences; context effects; subjective beliefs
    JEL: D01 D80 Z13
    Date: 2007–04–10
  4. By: Antonio Cabrales; Antoni Calvo-Armengol; Yves Zenou
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to understand the interactions between productive effort and the creation of synergies that are the sources of technological collaboration agreements, agglomeration, social stratification, etc. We model this interaction in a way that allows us to characterize how agents devote resources to both activities. This permits a fullfledged equilibrium/welfare analysis of network formation with endogenous investment efforts and to derive unambiguous comparative statics results. In spite of its parsimony that ensures tractability, the model retains enough richness to replicate a (relatively) broad range of empirical regularities displayed by social and economic networks, and is directly estimable to recover is structural parameters.
    Date: 2007–02
  5. By: Alan B. Krueger; David Schkade
    Abstract: This paper tests a central implication of the theory of equalizing differences, that workers sort into jobs with different attributes based on their preferences for those attributes. We present evidence from four new time-use data sets for the United States and France on whether workers who are more gregarious, as revealed by their behavior when they are not working, tend to be employed in jobs that involve more social interactions. In each data set we find a significant and sizable relationship between the tendency to interact with others off the job and while working. People's descriptions of their jobs and their personalities also accord reasonably well with their time use on and off the job. Furthermore, workers in occupations that require social interactions according to the O'Net Dictionary of Occupational Titles tend to spend more of their non-working time with friends. Lastly, we find that workers report substantially higher levels of job satisfaction and net affect while at work if their jobs entail frequent interactions with coworkers and other desirable working conditions.
    JEL: J0
    Date: 2007–04
  6. By: Ammermüller, Andreas
    Abstract: Violence at schools is a well-known problem in many societies. This paper assesses the degree of school violence in 11 European countries and analyzes the determinants of being a victim and its effect on student performance. The study draws on the international TIMSS 2003 and the British longitudinal NCDS data. The level of school violence is high in most countries but seems not to increase over time. Besides gender, social and migration background and the appearance of students determine being bullied, hurt or stolen from by fellow students. Being a victim has a small but significantly negative impact on contemporary and later student performance and the level of educational attainment and thereby affects earnings. It is hence an important peer effect that should not be omitted in the estimation of educational production functions.
    Keywords: School violence, bullying, human capital, TIMSS, NCDS
    JEL: I21 J24 Z13
    Date: 2007
  7. By: Bhanu Murthy, K.V.
    Abstract: Starting from the famous but controversial statement of Peter Drucker (1981) - “There is neither a separate ethics of business nor is one needed”, this paper goes on to argue that business ethics and social responsibility are not unrelated. It shows how it is necessary to distinguish between business philosophy and philosophy of business. Through this distinction it develops a framework that relates the two – business ethics and CSR. It goes on to argue that there is a paradigm shift in the philosophy of business. This shift leads to a framework wherein a new perspective on business ethics and social responsibility emerges. It is coined as Corporate Responsibility. It consists of (a) good governance (b) corporate social responsibility (“CSR”) (c) environmental accountability. It discusses the role of top managers in achieving Corporate Responsibility through Organizational Transformation. This is the integrated approach to Corporate Responsibility that needs to be incorporated into International Standards of Social Responsibility. However, the major challenge is of evolving a strategy for laying down standards that take care of major issues and provide standards that are measurable, objective and universal. The three central issues of International Social Responsibility Standards are: 1. Acceptance of the tri-focal approach – Governance, Responsibility and Accountability. 2. Approach to methods of measurement is resolved. 3. The mandatory versus voluntary issue can be resolved only if issues of measurement and their universal applicability is resolved.
    JEL: M21 D02 D21
    Date: 2007–04–09
  8. By: Edward L. Glaeser; Bruce Sacerdote
    Abstract: In the past two elections, richer people were more likely to vote Republican while richer states were more likely to vote Democratic. This switch is an aggregation reversal, where an individual relationship, like income and Republicanism, is reversed at some level of aggregation. Aggregation reversals can occur when an independent variable impacts an outcome both directly and indirectly through a correlation with beliefs. For example, income increases the desire for low taxes but decreases belief in Republican social causes. If beliefs are learned socially, then aggregation can magnify the connection between the independent variable and beliefs, which can cause an aggregation reversal. We estimate the model's parameters for three examples of aggregation reversals, and show with these parameters that the model predicts the observed reversals.
    JEL: A1
    Date: 2007–04
  9. By: Cerquera Dussán, Daniel
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the impact of network externalities on R&D competition between an incumbent and a potential entrant. The analysis shows that the incumbent always invests more than the entrant in the development of higher quality network goods. However, the incumbent exhibits a too low level of investments, while the entrant invests too much in R&D in comparison with the social optimum. In the model entry occurs too often in equilibrium. These inefficiencies are solely due to the presence of network externalities. By choosing compatible network goods, firms do not necessarily reduce the R&D competition intensity.
    Keywords: Network externalities, Innovation, Imperfect Competition
    JEL: D21 D85 L13 O31
    Date: 2006
  10. By: HUD - PD&R
    Abstract: Ideas that Work offers practical advice on how to establish homeownership programs. It draws on the experiences and successes of HUD's Office of University Partnerships (OUP) grantees nationwide who have developed and implemented a variety of programs and initiatives that promote homeownership. This document outlines the unique academic resources that institutions of higher education (IHEs) can bring to the process of designing community-based homeownership programs; describes how IHEs and their community partners can promote homeownership by either actively building affordable housing, marketing community neighborhoods to prospective homeowners, or developing a comprehensive neighborhood revitalization strategy of which homeownership is only a part; focuses on services that local partnerships can provide directly to prospective home-owners; and presents several unique programs through which OUP grantees support homeownership by training the individuals who will eventually build and finance owner-occupied homes. In addition, resources and contact information for resource persons are listed.
    JEL: A00
    Date: 2006–08
  11. By: Shirley Dex; Jo Lindley (Department of Economics, The University of Sheffield)
    Abstract: The paper devises a new method of calculating whether individuals are over educated using a parametric model. This new method is applied to men and women from different ethnic groups using data drawn from 4 pooled cross-sections of the UK Labour Force Survey. Calibrated against existing mean-mode methods, the new approach leads to lower levels of over education, more so for men than women. The model is then extended to include non-qualification elements of human capital such as employment experience and job related skills. Model specifications are further varied by educational qualification measures, the presence of children and gender, as well as allowing for full gender segregation by estimating a single equation (pooled men and women) and separate equations (men and women separately). The results show that the while the overall extent of over education has similarities with earlier studies (eg. over-education is more prevalent amongst women than men), the differences between ethnic groups, as well as between minority ethnic groups and White employees, are far less than that found in some earlier studies. Black African men and women had the greatest amount of over education, followed by Chinese women. Bangladeshi women had the lowest rates among women. It is probably possible to explain almost all of the gap in over education rates between white and minority women and men by a combination of factors; differences in working part time, being temporarily over educated and by differences in the quality of educational qualifications.
    Keywords: Qualifications, discrimination, employment, ethnicity
    JEL: J15 J61
    Date: 2007–01

This nep-soc issue is ©2007 by Fabio Sabatini. 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.
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