nep-soc New Economics Papers
on Social Norms and Social Capital
Issue of 2008‒05‒17
twelve papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
University of Siena

  1. Institutions and Behavior: Experimental Evidence on the Effects of Democracy By Pedro Dal Bó; Andrew Foster; Louis Putterman
  2. Trust in Channel Relationships: Calculative, Affective, Belief and Performance By Claro, Danny P.; Claro, Priscila
  3. The Role of Families in Shaping Youth Social Participation: Evidence from Singapore By Irene Y.H. Ng; Kong Weng Ho; K.C. Ho
  4. Religion, Longevity, and Cooperation: The Case of the Craft Guild. By Gary Richardson; Michael McBride
  5. Corporate Social Responsibility Through an Economic Lens By Forest L. Reinhardt; Robert N. Stavins; Richard H. K. Vietor
  6. Do Employees Care about their Relative Position? Behavioural Evidence Focusing on Performance By Benno Torgler; Markus Schaffner; Sascha L. Schmidt; Bruno S. Frey
  7. Workers behavior and labor contract : an evolutionary approach. By Victor Hiller
  8. INSTITUTIONAL Change as Cultural Change. An Illustration by Chinese Postsocialist Transformation By EL KAROUNI, Ilyess
  9. ORIGINS and Strengthening of Institutional Change: the Chinese Case By EL KAROUNI, Ilyess
  10. Gain versus pain from status and ambition: Effects on growth and inequality By Tournemaine, Frederic; Tsoukis, Christopher
  11. Strategic use of CSR as a signal for good management By LUIS GOMEZ - MEJIA
  12. O Impacto de Capital Humano, Capital Social e Práticas Gerenciais na Sobrevivência de Empresas Nascentes: um Estudo com Dados de Pequenas Empresas no Estado de São Paulo By Mizumoto, Fabio Matuoka & Artes, Rinaldo & Lazzarini, Sergio Giovanetti & Hashimoto, Marcos & Bedê, Marco Aurélio

  1. By: Pedro Dal Bó; Andrew Foster; Louis Putterman
    Abstract: A novel experiment is used to show that the effect of a policy on the level of cooperation is greater when it is chosen democratically by the subjects than when it is exogenously imposed. In contrast to the previous literature, our experimental design allows us to control for selection effects (e.g. those who choose the policy may be affected differently by it). Our finding implies that democratic institutions may affect behavior directly in addition to having effects through the choice of policies. Our findings have implications for the generalizability of the results of randomized policy interventions.
    JEL: C10 C9 D7 O10
    Date: 2008–05
  2. By: Claro, Danny P.; Claro, Priscila
    Date: 2007–10
  3. By: Irene Y.H. Ng (Department of Social Work, National University of Singapore, Singapore); Kong Weng Ho (Division of Economics, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore); K.C. Ho (Department of Sociology, National University of Singapore, Singapore)
    Abstract: Youth participation in social groups is important in developing skills and experience for successful transition to adulthood. What kinds of families do youth who are active in social groups and who take on leadership positions come from? Using data from the National Youth Survey 2005, this research studies the social participation of Singaporean youth aged 15 -18. Through probit regression analysis, it examines how youth participation in Singapore is associated with two types of family characteristics. First, it examines the role of maternal education. As a proxy for social class, maternal education represents the roles of cultural capital formation and concerted involvement by middle class parents. Second, it studies the role of family challenge and support. Maternal education is found to predict both high participation and leadership. While additional family challenge induces greater participation, family support increases participation only when the level of support is high.
    Keywords: youth participation; family challenge; family support; social class
    Date: 2008–01
  4. By: Gary Richardson; Michael McBride
    Abstract: When the mortality rate is high, repeated interaction alone may not sustain cooperation, and religion may play an important role in shaping economic institutions. This insight explains why during the fourteenth century, when plagues decimated populations and the church promoted the doctrine of purgatory, guilds that bundled together religious and occupational activities dominated manufacturing and commerce. During the sixteenth century, the disease environment eased, and the Reformation dispelled the doctrine of purgatory, necessitating the development of new methods of organizing industry. The logic underlying this conclusion has implications for the study of institutions, economics, and religion throughout history and in the developing world today.
    JEL: D02 D43 L1 L15 L2 L22 L23 N34 N64 N74 N84 N94 Z12
    Date: 2008–05
  5. By: Forest L. Reinhardt; Robert N. Stavins; Richard H. K. Vietor
    Abstract: Business leaders, government officials, and academics are focusing considerable attention on the concept of "corporate social responsibility" (CSR), particularly in the realm of environmental protection. Beyond complete compliance with environmental regulations, do firms have additional moral or social responsibilities to commit resources to environmental protection? How should we think about the notion of firms sacrificing profits in the social interest? May they do so within the scope of their fiduciary responsibilities to their shareholders? Can they do so on a sustainable basis, or will the forces of a competitive marketplace render such efforts and their impacts transient at best? Do firms, in fact, frequently or at least sometimes behave this way, reducing their earnings by voluntarily engaging in environmental stewardship? And finally, should firms carry out such profit-sacrificing activities (i.e., is this an efficient use of social resources)? We address these questions through the lens of economics, including insights from legal analysis and business scholarship.
    JEL: L51 M14 Q50
    Date: 2008–05
  6. By: Benno Torgler; Markus Schaffner; Sascha L. Schmidt; Bruno S. Frey
    Abstract: Do employees care about their relative (economic) position among co-workers in an organization? And if so, does it raise or lower their performance? Behavioral evidence on these important questions is rare. This paper takes a novel approach to answering these questions, working with sports data from two different disciplines, basketball and soccer. These sports tournaments take place in a controlled environment defined by the rules of the game. We find considerable support that positional concerns and envy reduce individual performance. In contrast, there does not seem to be any tolerance for income disparity, based on the hope that such differences signal that better times are under way. Positive behavioral consequences are observed for those who are experiencing better times.
    Keywords: Relative income; positional concerns; envy; social comparison; relative derivation; performance
    JEL: D00 D60 L83
    Date: 2008–04
  7. By: Victor Hiller (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne et Paris School of Economics)
    Abstract: This article investigates the co-evolution of labor relationships and workers preferences. According to recent experimental economics findinggs on social preferences, the workforce is assumed to be heterogeneous. It is composed by both cooperative and non-cooperative workers. In addition, firms differ by the type of contract they offer (explicit or implicit). Finally, both the distribution of preferences and the degree of contractual completeness are endogeneized. Preferences evolve through a process of cultural transmission and the proportion of implicit contracts is driven by an evolutionary process. The complementarity between the transmission of cooperation and the implementation of implicit contracts leads to multiple equilibria which allow for path-dependence. This property is illustrated by the evolutions of American and Japanese labor contracts during the Twentieth century.
    Keywords: Explicit contract, implicit contract, cultural transmission, preferences for reciprocity, path dependence.
    JEL: D64 D86 Z10
    Date: 2008–04
  8. By: EL KAROUNI, Ilyess
    Abstract: Culture of a society reflects its social values. So, through Chinese experience, we want to show that institutional change is not only an economic or a political process but fundamentally a cultural one. It is therefore based on a change in values and mentalities. Like in a chemical reaction, we discern initial conditions, factors which triggered the reaction, catalysts and elements of synthesis. Chinese institutional change per se derived from a cultural shock induced by the Chinese economic, political and cultural opening which acts as trigger. The remain paper deals with the other elements of the process.
    Keywords: China; institutional change; culture; causality
    JEL: P21 Z10 P51 B41
    Date: 2007–11
  9. By: EL KAROUNI, Ilyess
    Abstract: Without necessarily reduce it to a single cause, this article lays stress on the cultural foundations of the Chinese postsocialist transformation. The process began with what we call a «cultural shock» brought about the opening of the country and took the form of an ideological aggiornamento. Henceforth Chinese authorities attach more importance to the economy than the ideology. Deep changes occurred at all levels of Chinese economic system. Besides it is this process which allows the institutional consolidation.
    Keywords: Chine; Changement institutionnel; Culture
    JEL: P30 B52 P51
    Date: 2008–05–12
  10. By: Tournemaine, Frederic; Tsoukis, Christopher
    Abstract: To shed lights on growth, distribution and the relationships between the two, we develop a growth model with heterogeneous individuals who care about social status. Individuals' heterogeneity stems from two sources: their innate skills and their degree of ambition. While the willingness of individuals to accumulate wealth depends whether they experience gain or pain from loss of status, we show that ambition of individuals plays an important role regarding growth and distribution: ambition can inhibit or foster accumulation of wealth, then in turn growth. In such a context, we show that growth can be positively or negatively correlated with inequalities.
    Keywords: social aspirations; ambition; inequality; growth.
    JEL: O41
    Date: 2008–02
  11. By: LUIS GOMEZ - MEJIA (Instituto de Empresa)
    Abstract: More than thirty years of research exploring the link between corporate social responsibility (CSR) and corporate financial performance (CFP) could not provide a satisfying resolution to the tension exists between economic and social objectives. In this paper, we have contributed to the existing CSR literature both theoretically and empirically. On the theoretical side, we challenged the assumption that managers consider all stakeholders equally important and we contend that managers prioritize stakeholders instead. We also extend agency theory by suggesting that CSR may actually reduce monitoring costs since it has informative value about the quality of management.
    Date: 2008–04
  12. By: Mizumoto, Fabio Matuoka & Artes, Rinaldo & Lazzarini, Sergio Giovanetti & Hashimoto, Marcos & Bedê, Marco Aurélio
    Date: 2008–10

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