nep-soc New Economics Papers
on Social Norms and Social Capital
Issue of 2014‒08‒02
nine papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. The emergence of reciprocally beneficial cooperation By Sergio Beraldo; Robert Sugden
  2. Disorder, Social Capital, and Norm Violation: Three Field Experiments on the Broken Windows Thesis By Keuschnigg, Marc; Wolbring, Tobias
  3. A Multilevel Path Analysis of Social Networks and Social Interaction in Neighbourhood By van den Berg, Pauline; Timmermans, Harry J.P.
  4. The Dark Side of Leadership: An Experiment on Religious Heterogeneity and Cooperation in India. By Keuschnigg, Marc; Schikora, Jan
  5. Social Networks on the Web in Real Estates in Portugal By Florentino, Teresa; Casaca, Joaquim
  6. Importance of Social Networks in Real Estate Brokerage By Chow, Yuen Leng; Ong, Seow-Eng
  7. Private provision of a public good: cooperation and altruism of internet forum users By Ros-Galvez, Alejandro; Rosa-García, Alfonso
  8. Do leaders affect ethical conduct? By Giovanna d’Adda; Donja Darai; Roberto A. Weber
  9. Grammar of difference? Labour policies and social norms on work and gender in the Netherlands and the Netherlands Indies, ca. 1800-1940 By Elise van Nederveen Meerkerk

  1. By: Sergio Beraldo (Università di Napoli Federico II and CSEF); Robert Sugden (School of Economics and Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science, University of East Anglia)
    Abstract: This paper offers a new and robust model of the emergence and persistence of cooperation when interactions are anonymous, the population is well-mixed, and the evolutionary process selects strategies according to material payoffs. The model has a Prisoner’s Dilemma structure, but with an outside option of non-participation. The payoff to mutual cooperation is stochastic; with positive probability, it exceeds that from cheating against a cooperator. Under mild conditions, mutually beneficial cooperation occurs in equilibrium. This is possible because the non-participation option holds down the equilibrium frequency of cheating. The dynamics of the model are investigated both theoretically and through simulations.
    Keywords: Cooperation; voluntary participation; random payoffs
    JEL: C73
    Date: 2014–07–18
  2. By: Keuschnigg, Marc; Wolbring, Tobias
    Abstract: Adding to the debate about the “broken windows” thesis we discuss an explanation of minor norm violation based on the assumption that individuals infer expected sanctioning probabilities from contextual cues. We modify the classical framework of rational crime by signals of disorder, local social control, and their interaction. Testing our implications we present results from three field experiments showing that violations of norms, which prevent physical as well as social disorder, foster further violations of the same and of different norms. Varying the net gains from deviance it shows that disorder effects are limited to low cost situations. Moreover, we provide suggestive evidence that disorder effects are significantly stronger in neighborhoods with high social capital.
    Keywords: broken windows theory; disorder; field experiment; low cost situations; norm violation; social capital
    JEL: C9 C93 K42 R23 Z13
    Date: 2014
  3. By: van den Berg, Pauline; Timmermans, Harry J.P.
    Abstract: In urban renewal policies in the Netherlands, great importance is attached to housing diversification and social mix in neighbourhoods. The assumption that housing diversification will lead to more neighbourhood-based social interaction and social cohesion has been taken for granted, although empirical evidence supporting this assumption is scarce and inconclusive. It is therefore important to improve our understanding of the effects of neighbourhood characteristics on neighbourhood-based social contacts, based on empirical results. This paper aims to contribute to this line of research by studying the role of socio-demographics and neighbourhood characteristics in the formation of social network ties and social interactions with neighbours. These relationships are analysed using a multi-level path analysis approach. The analyses are based on data collected in 2011 in 70 different neighbourhoods in Eindhoven, the Netherlands in a survey among 751 respondents. The results indicate that neighbourhood-based contacts are influenced by socio-demographic characteristics. People who spend more time at home (people with children and people who do not work) and who have been living longer at the current address have a larger share of neighbours in their social network and higher contact frequencies with their neighbours. Immigrants have a smaller share of neighbours in their social network. Education is found to have a negative effect, whereas income is found to have a positive effect on social interaction with neighbours. Neighbourhood characteristics are not found to affect social network size, the share of neighbours in the network or the frequency of interaction with neighbours. This finding is at variance with the assumption that an adaptation of neighbourhood characteristics (through urban renewal) can lead to increasing social interaction among neighbours.
    Date: 2013
  4. By: Keuschnigg, Marc; Schikora, Jan
    Abstract: We investigate voluntary contribution to public goods in culturally heterogeneous groups with a laboratory experiment conducted among 432 Hindu and Muslim subjects in India. With our specification of 'Leading by example' we test for an interaction effect between leadership and religious heterogeneity in a high stake environment. While cultural diversity does not affect contributions in the standard linear Public Goods Game, it reduces cooperation in the presence of a leader. Furthermore, we show that preferences for conditional cooperation are only prevalent in pure groups. In mixed groups, poor leadership and uncertainty about followers' reciprocity hinders the functionality of leadership as an institutional device to resolve social dilemmas.
    Keywords: leading by example; conditional cooperation; reciprocity; religious diversity; public goods game
    JEL: C92 H41 O12 Z12
    Date: 2014
  5. By: Florentino, Teresa; Casaca, Joaquim
    Abstract: This article aims to analyze different types of Social Networks, its purpose, success and evolution, and also its advantages for people and businesses in particular in Real Estate mediation in Portugal. This article includes some research related to the use of Social Networks and its relationships with Real Estate. First the social networks and issues related to investment and Marketing relations are analysed, structured and classified, and it is also analysed the Real Estate business. Then there are presented some statistics based on data according to Social Networking use in Real Estate companies in Portugal and in particular, the use of Facebook. Finally, some conclusions of this study are presented and highlighted the main limitations of this research as well as some recommendations for future studies. According to statistics made by Real Estate companies in Portugal, in a universe of 3231, and given a sample of about 500 companies in the Real Estate business, 15% have their own sites and in these, Facebook subscription is over 12%, 4% on Twitter, 1% on LinkedIn, and no more than 1% on YouTube. By Adding and adapting technologies and new trends like Social Networks and using the Internet, we can expect a better understanding of consumers and new ways of doing business and new business opportunities. There are few articles referring to Social Networks and Real Estate and in Portuguese reality this is even more uncommon. This kind of researches should be more frequent and compared, when possible, with other countries and other situations.
    Date: 2013
  6. By: Chow, Yuen Leng; Ong, Seow-Eng
    Abstract: In this paper, we aim to analyze the importance of traditional social networks in selling real estate. In recent years, the use of various social networking sites like FaceBook, LinkedIn is ubiquitous, to the extent that these social networking sites are now commonly used as a tool by real estate brokers to expand and maintain their client network. However, the use of social networks as a link to establish business opportunities is not new. In a business context, business associations, university alumnus gatherings, cultural associations, country clubs, etc., are avenues where business contacts can be formed. Thus, in this paper we are interested in exploring the question of whether a more 'traditional' social network has an impact on a real estate broker's sale performance. More specifically, we are interested to see whether 'culture' affects sales performance.In the extant literature, there is a rich literature on real estate brokerage that analyzes agent's performance, listing and selling of the properties through the multiple listing services, the impact of incentives (commission) on agent's performance, and the asymmetric problem for a property sold by owners and for a property sold by agents. There are also papers that analyse, from an information angle, the impact of the use of internet on sales performance. In this paper, we look into the question of whether real estate brokers close more deals with people of their own cultural background. We intend to analyse this question by employing both a regression and probit model to examine the significance of a common cultural background on a real estate broker's sale performance.
    Date: 2013
  7. By: Ros-Galvez, Alejandro; Rosa-García, Alfonso
    Abstract: We run an experiment with users of internet message boards. We find that forum users cooperate more with partners of their own forum than with partners from a different forum but they are equally altruistic when they made a gift to a partner of their forum or from another one. We also find that individuals are more active in the forums, the more altruistic they are; however, we find no relation between activity in the forum and cooperation. These results suggest that the public good provided in internet forums is mainly provided by a group of unconditional altruistic group of users, and that the feeling of community supports the cooperation in that provision.
    Keywords: internet forums; public good provision; altruism; cooperation
    JEL: C9 C90 H41 H42 L86
    Date: 2014–07–25
  8. By: Giovanna d’Adda; Donja Darai; Roberto A. Weber
    Abstract: We study whether leaders influence the unethical conduct of followers. To avoid selection issues present in natural environments, we use a laboratory experiment in which we form groups and assign leadership roles at random. We study an environment in which groups compete, with dishonest behavior enhancing group earnings to the detriment of social welfare. We vary, by treatment, two instruments through which leaders can influence follower conduct—prominent statements to the group and the allocation of monetary incentives. In general, the presence of active group leaders gives rise to significantly more dishonest behavior. Moreover, appointing leaders who are likely to have acted dishonestly in a preliminary stage of the experiment yields groups with significantly more unethical conduct. The analysis of leaders’ strategies reveals that leaders’ statements have a stronger effect on follower behavior than the ability to distribute financial rewards, and that leaders’ propensity to act dishonestly correlates with their use of statements or incentives as a means for encouraging dishonest follower conduct.
    Keywords: Leadership, ethics, dishonesty, experiment
    JEL: C92 C72 D03
    Date: 2014–07
  9. By: Elise van Nederveen Meerkerk
    Abstract: This paper investigates developments in labour policies and social norms on gender and work from the perspective of colonial entanglements. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, work was seen a means to morally discipline the poor, both in the Netherlands and the Netherlands Indies. A prime example are the initiatives by Johannes van den Bosch, who first in 1818 established 'peat colonies(!)' in the Netherlands, where the urban poor were transported to become industrious agrarian workers. In 1830, the same Van den Bosch introduced the Cultivation System in the Netherlands Indies, likewise, to increase Javanese peasants' industriousness. During the nineteenth century, ideals and practices of the male breadwinner started to pervade Dutch working-class households, and child and women's labour laws were issued. Instead, legislation in the Netherlands Indies was introduced very late and under heavy pressure of the international community. Not only did Dutch politicians consider it 'natural' that Indonesian women and children worked. What is more, they presented the inherent differences between Indonesian and Dutch women as legitimation for the protection of the latter: a fine example of what Ann Stoler and Frederick Cooper have called a 'grammar of difference'.
    Keywords: Social policy, Women's work, Child labour, Colonial history, Labour relations.
    Date: 2014–07

This nep-soc issue is ©2014 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.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.