nep-soc New Economics Papers
on Social Norms and Social Capital
Issue of 2008‒05‒31
ten papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
University of Siena

  1. The impact of network structure on knowledge transfer: An application of social network analysis in the context of regional innovation networks By Michael Fritsch; Martina Kauffeld-Monz
  2. Interaction Structures in Local Innovation Systems By Uwe Cantner; Holger Graf
  3. How important is pro-social behaviour in the delivery of public services? By Paul Gregg; Paul A. Grout; Anita Ratcliffe; Sarah Smith; Frank Windmeijer
  4. Explaining International Differences in Entrepreneurship: The Role of Individual Characteristics and Regulatory Constraints By Silvia Ardagna; Annamaria Lusardi
  5. Social Interaction in Tax Evasion By Lipatov, Vilen
  6. Innovator networks and regional knowledge base By Uwe Cantner; Andreas Meder; Anne ter Wal
  7. Cooperative Strategies for Improving the Tourism Industry in Remote Geographic Regions: An Addition to Trust and Commitment Theory with one Key Mediating Construct By Pesämaa, Ossi; Hair Jr, Joseph F
  8. Congestion at the floating road? Negotiation in networked innovation By Soekijad, M.; Walschots, J.; Huysman, M.
  9. The Effect of CSR on Stock Performance: New Evidence for the USA and Europe By Urs von Arx; Andreas Ziegler
  10. Do Migrants Get Good Jobs in Australia? The Role of Ethnic Networks in Job Search By Mahuteau, Stéphane; Junankar, Pramod N. (Raja)

  1. By: Michael Fritsch (Friedrich Schiller University Jena, German Institute for Economic Research (DIW-Berlin), and Max Planck Institute of Economics, Jena, Germany); Martina Kauffeld-Monz (Institute for Urban Science and Structural Policy (IfS Berlin), Germany)
    Abstract: We analyze information and knowledge transfer in a sample of 16 German regional innovation networks with almost 300 firms and research organizations involved. The results indicate that strong ties are more beneficial for the exchange of knowledge and information than weak ties. Moreover, our results suggest that broker positions tend to be associated with social returns rather than with private benefits.
    Keywords: Regional innovation networks, R+D-collaboration, knowledge exchange, social network analysis, strong ties, knowledge brokers
    JEL: D83 D85 L14 O32
    Date: 2008–05–06
  2. By: Uwe Cantner (Friedrich-Schiller University, Jena, Economics Department); Holger Graf (Friedrich-Schiller University, Jena, Economics Department)
    Abstract: The flow of knowledge through interaction between innovative actors is central to the systemic view of innovation. We review the lite ature on interaction and innovator networks with a focus on regional aspects. To illustrate the relevance of these relations, we apply social network analysis methods to describe the evolution of the innovator network of Jena, Germany in the period from 1995 to 2001. During this period, the network is characterised by growth in the number of patents, actors and relations, with central positions of public research. The evolution is directed towards an increasing focus on core compe- tencies of the network.
    Keywords: Innovator Networks, Innovation System, R+D Cooperation. Mobility
    JEL: O31 L14 R11
    Date: 2008–05–08
  3. By: Paul Gregg; Paul A. Grout; Anita Ratcliffe; Sarah Smith; Frank Windmeijer
    Abstract: A number of papers have posited that there is a relationship between institutional structure and pro-social behaviour, in particular donated labour, in the delivery of public services, such as health, social care and education. However, there has been very little empirical research that attempts to measure whether such a relationship exists in practice. This is the aim of this paper. Including a robust set of individual and job-specific controls, we find that individuals in the non-profit sector are significantly more likely to donate their labour, measured by unpaid overtime, than those in the for-profit sector. We can reject that this difference is simply due to implicit contracts or social norms. We find some evidence that individuals differentially select into the non-profit and for-profit sectors according to whether they donate their labour.
    Keywords: pro-social behaviour; public services; donated labour; motivation
    JEL: H11 J32 J45 L31 L32
    Date: 2008–05
  4. By: Silvia Ardagna; Annamaria Lusardi
    Abstract: We use a micro dataset that collects information across individuals, countries, and time to investigate the determinants of entrepreneurial activity in thirty-seven developed and developing nations. We focus both on individual characteristics and on countries' regulatory differences. We show that individual characteristics, such as gender, age, and status in the workforce are important determinants of entrepreneurship, and we also highlight the relevance of social networks, self-assessed skills, and attitudes toward risk. Moreover, we find that regulation plays a critical role, particularly for those individuals who become entrepreneurs to pursue a business opportunity. The individual characteristics that are impacted most by regulation are those measuring working status, social network, business skills, and attitudes toward risk
    JEL: M13
    Date: 2008–05
  5. By: Lipatov, Vilen
    Abstract: We analyze the tax evasion problem with social interaction among the taxpayers. If the authority commits to a fixed auditing probability, a positive share of cheating is obtained in equilibrium. This stands in contrast to the existing literature, which yields full compliance of audited taxpayers who are rational and thus do not need to interact. When the authority adjusts the auditing probability every period, cycling in cheating-auditing occurs. Thus, the real life phenomenon of compliance fluctuations is explained within the model rather than by exogenous parameter shifts. Our analysis can also be applied to crime, safety regulations, employment and environmental protection, as well as other compliance problems.
    Keywords: tax evasion; learning; social interaction; behavioral rule; compliance
    JEL: C79 D83 K42 H26
    Date: 2008–03–28
  6. By: Uwe Cantner (Friedrich-Schiller University, Jena, Economics Department); Andreas Meder (Friedrich-Schiller University, Jena, Economics Department); Anne ter Wal (Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University)
    Abstract: This paper concerns the regional innovation system approach. It deals with the characteristics of three regional systems, Northern Hesse, Alpes-Maritime and Jena, and focusses on each regional network of innovators. In this context the importance of the size and homogeneity of a regional pool of knowledge spillovers for those networks is analyzed. We ï¬nd evidence that an increasing regional knowledge base in combination with an increas- ing homogeneity of this knowledge base enhances the knowledge flows and the incentives for actors to interact with each other.
    Keywords: cooperation, innovator networks, complementarity of knowledge, interaction structure
    JEL: O31 P25 Q55
    Date: 2008–05–13
  7. By: Pesämaa, Ossi; Hair Jr, Joseph F
    Abstract: The success of cooperative relationships is influenced by interorganizational commitment, which is a long-run goal of networks. Our research examined cooperative relationships in the tourism industry to better understand what makes them successful. The study is an extension of previous empirical research on commitment. The overall research questions were: ‘‘What factors lead to interorganizational commitment in remote tourismdestinations?’’ and ‘‘What are the relationships between the factors?’’ A literature search was conducted to identify factors related to organizational commitment. Search findings suggested a model proposing that interpersonal commitment mediates the effect of trust and reciprocity on interorganizational commitment. Data for the model was collected from a sample of tourism firms in successful cooperative networks. The theoretical model was purified based on convergent, nomological and discriminant validity as well as construct reliability. Our findings demonstrated that the relationship between trust and interorganizational commitment is in fact mediated by interpersonal commitment. We confirmed that reciprocity is directly related to interorganizational commitment, and is not mediated by interpersonal commitment. Thus, tourism firms should develop cooperative strategies in their networks by focusing on enhancing interpersonal commitment through trust, thereby ultimately helping to strengthen interorganizational commitment.
    Keywords: Interpersonal commitment; interorganizational commitment; trust; reciprocity; tourism; experience stratos
    JEL: C12 M12 C21
    Date: 2008
  8. By: Soekijad, M. (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Faculteit der Economische Wetenschappen en Econometrie (Free University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics Sciences, Business Administration and Economitrics); Walschots, J.; Huysman, M.
    Abstract: In this paper we develop a framework for analyzing negotiation processes in networked innovation, and apply it in infrastructure construction. The paper departs from the question: Why do technological innovative concepts sometimes emerge and diffuse while at other times they ‘congest’? An explanation is found in negotiation processes at different levels in networks, as technological innovations increasingly emerge in heterogeneous networks. We contribute to theory by focusing on the process of negotiation in networks (instead of on network structure), and by showing and explaining how negotiations can both contribute to and adjourn networked innovation processes.
    Keywords: Embeddedness; Infrastructure technology; Innovation processes; Negotiation; Networked innovation
    Date: 2008
  9. By: Urs von Arx (CER-ETH, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich, Center of Economic Research); Andreas Ziegler (University of Zurich, Center for Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability)
    Abstract: This paper provides new empirical evidence for the effect of corporate social responsibility (CSR) on corporate financial performance. In contrast to former studies, we examine two different regions, namely the USA and Europe. Our econometric analysis shows that environmental and social activities of a firm compared with other firms within the industry are valued by financial markets in both regions. However, the respective positive effects on average monthly stock returns between 2003 and 2006 appear to be more robust in the USA and, in addition, to be nonlinear. Our analysis furthermore points to biased parameter estimations if incorrectly specified econometric models are applied: The seemingly significantly negative effect of environmental and social performance of the industry to which a firm belongs vanishes if the explanation of stock performance is based on the Fama-French threefactor or the Carhart four-factor models instead of the simple Capital Asset Pricing Model.
    Keywords: Corporate social responsibility, Environmental performance, Financial performance, Asset pricing models.
    JEL: Q56 M14 G12 Q01
    Date: 2008–05
  10. By: Mahuteau, Stéphane (Macquarie University, Sydney); Junankar, Pramod N. (Raja) (University of Western Sydney)
    Abstract: We study the role of ethnic networks in migrants’ job search and the quality of jobs they find in the first years of settlement. We find that there are initial downward movements along the occupational ladder, followed by improvements. As a result of restrictions in welfare eligibility since 1997, we study whether this increases the probability that new migrants accept “bad jobs” quickly and then move onto better jobs over time. Holding employability constant, our results support this view. However, accounting for their higher employability, new migrants seem to fare better up to a year and half after settlement.
    Keywords: immigration policy, job quality, migrants, ethnic networks
    JEL: J61 J68 C25
    Date: 2008–05

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