nep-soc New Economics Papers
on Social Norms and Social Capital
Issue of 2019‒09‒30
eleven papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. "Trust, Beliefs and Cooperation: Excavating a Foundation of Strong Economics By Jeongbin Kim; Louis Putterman; Xinyi Zhang
  2. A radius of trust? Contrasting insights from experiments and survey data By Parlasca, Martin C.; Hermann, Daniel; Mußhoff, Oliver
  3. The Giver as a General in Her Fortunes. Experimental Evidence on Trust, Inequality and Growth (or Decline) By Marcello D'Amato; Niall O’Higgins; Marco Stimolo
  4. Human Development, Social Interactions, and Identity Formation By Avner Seror
  5. The dynamics of organizational trust -A case study By Anne-Claire Chêne
  6. Technology adoption and pro-social preference By Raphaël Soubeyran
  7. Role of honesty and confined interpersonal influence in modelling predilections By Khalid, Asma; Beg, Ismat
  8. Lost in Transition? The Persistence of Dictatorship Mayors By González, F; Muñoz, P; Prem, M
  9. Conflicting Identities: Cosmopolitan or Anxious? Appreciating Concerns of Host Country Population Improves Attitudes Towards Immigrants By Stöhr, Tobias; Wichardt, Philipp
  10. Education-occupation mismatch of migrants in the Italian labour market: the effect of social networks By Van Wolleghem, Pierre Georges; De Angelis, Marina; Scicchitano, Sergio
  11. Evolutionarily stable in-group altruismin intergroup conflict By Guillaume Cheikbossian

  1. By: Jeongbin Kim; Louis Putterman; Xinyi Zhang
    Abstract: We use a two-phase experimental design to study how systematically manipulated beliefs about trust and trustworthiness can promote or deter cooperation. We use decisions in an initially played trust game to create five environments that differ in the information subjects have about the relative trust/trustworthiness of fellow group members when they make a voluntary contribution decision in our experiment’s second phase. We find that perceived high trusting environments are treated equivalently to ones of perceived high trustworthiness, with both positively affecting subjects’ first-order beliefs about the cooperativeness of group-mates, and in consequence, leading to higher contributions. Our results indicate that people cooperate more and hence produce more together in an environment of high trust/trustworthiness, indicating one channel through which trust helps to grow the economic pie.
    Date: 2019
  2. By: Parlasca, Martin C.; Hermann, Daniel; Mußhoff, Oliver
    Abstract: A person's reach of efficient economic activities is strongly influenced by the extent to which she grants trust towards other people. The radius of trust has recently gained interest as a concept to elucidate the underlying principles of how far a person extends her trust. However, empirical research on the radius of trust has up to now only been grounded in survey data. In this paper we use an incentivized experiment, namely the trust game, and two sets of survey questions to i) identify and localize the radius of trust and ii) contrast experimental and survey results regarding the radius of trust. To do so, we measure trust layers of 394 semi-nomadic pastoralists in rural Kenya conditional on three levels of social distance: trust towards people from one's own village, trust towards people from a neighboring village, and trust towards city dwellers from the county capital. Experimental data suggest that city dwellers are excluded from the radius of trust and face particularly low trust levels, while people from one's own village and from neighboring villages are inside the radius of trust. Survey data do not suggest any clear-cut radius of trust. Implications for development practitioners and further research on the radius of trust are discussed.
    Keywords: radius of trust,social distance,trust,field experiment,pastoralism,Kenya
    JEL: C93 D01 O12
    Date: 2019
  3. By: Marcello D'Amato (Università di Salerno, CELPE and CSEF); Niall O’Higgins (Università di Salerno and International Labour Organization (ILO)); Marco Stimolo (Università della Campania Luigi Vanvitelli)
    Abstract: We report the results of a laboratory experiment based on the trust game and designed to assess the impact of economic growth and inequality on trust in a unified framework. Compared to a control with no inequality, we implement three treatments with exogenously induced inequality in environments characterized by growing, stable or falling initial average endowments. We find that trust and trustworthiness both decrease with inequality, and trust (but not trustworthiness) increases with an increase in the average endowment level. Hence, the negative impact of inequality on trust results to be stronger in the environment with falling average endowment, whereas no effect is recorded in the environment with growing average endowment. These aggregate effects are driven by the significant negative reactions to inequality by those who, due to treatment, end up at the bottom of the endowment distribution. Classification-C91, D31, D90
    Keywords: Trust Game, Inequality, Growth, Decline
    Date: 2019–09–19
  4. By: Avner Seror (Aix-Marseille Univ, CNRS, EHESS, Ecole Centrale, AMSE, Marseille, France)
    Abstract: This paper presents a general theory of child development that incorporates interactive learning and identity formation in social interactions with caregivers. The model sheds light on many puzzling aspects of child development. Child learning responds nonmonotonically to caregivers' attention and approval in social interactions. I highlight key parental characteristics associated with child learning, and identity formation. The theory also explains why media devices widen human inequality. Lessons are finally drawn for the design of policies that alleviate human inequality.
    Keywords: human development, human inequality, social interactions, identity, parenting, learning, intergenerational transmission, media
    JEL: D10 D91 Z10
    Date: 2019–09
  5. By: Anne-Claire Chêne (IRG - Institut de Recherche en Gestion - UPEM - Université Paris-Est Marne-la-Vallée - UPEC UP12 - Université Paris-Est Créteil Val-de-Marne - Paris 12)
    Abstract: I have been conducting a case study for two years in a company operating on the basis of "trust, autonomy and responsibility". My aim with this study is to understand how organizational practices can increase or decrease the level of trust of the employees towards the organization, over time and through the different levels of the organization.
    Date: 2019–07–04
  6. By: Raphaël Soubeyran (CEE-M - Centre d'Economie de l'Environnement - Montpellier - FRE2010 - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - UM - Université de Montpellier - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - Montpellier SupAgro - Institut national d’études supérieures agronomiques de Montpellier)
    Abstract: In this paper, I study the design of least cost technology adoption subsidy schemes when the individuals' decisions are affected by peer effects and pro-social motivations. I show that pro-social preferences lead to lower individual subsidies whether peer effects are positive or negative. However, the form of the optimal scheme strongly depends on the type of peer effects. When peer effects are positive pro-social preferences lead to an increase in objective inequality -the difference between individual material payoffs- while they lead to a decrease in subjective inequality -the difference between individual utility levels. When peer effects are negative, the optimal subsidy scheme is uniform, that is all the individuals receive the same subsidy. The model delivers insights for the design of a large range of intervention programs supporting the adoption of new technologies, both in contexts where peer effects are positive (as has been shown in the case of malaria prevention technologies and modern agricultural inputs) and in contexts where peer effects are negative (as has been shown in the case of deworming pills).
    Keywords: pro-social preferences.,incentives,inequality,externality,principal,agents
    Date: 2019
  7. By: Khalid, Asma; Beg, Ismat
    Abstract: Classical models of decision-making do not incorporate for the role of influence and honesty that affects the process. This paper develops on the theory of influence in social network analysis. We study the role of influence and honesty of individual experts on collective outcomes. It is assumed that experts have the tendency to improve their initial predilection for an alternative, over the rest, if they interact with one another. It is suggested that this revised predilection may not be proposed with complete honesty by the expert. Degree of honesty is computed from the preference relation provided by the experts. This measure is dependent on average fuzziness in the relation and its disparity from an additive reciprocal relation. Moreover, an algorithm is introduced to cater for incompleteness in the adjacency matrix of interpersonal influences. This is done by analysing the information on how the expert has influenced others and how others have influenced the expert.
    Keywords: Honesty; group decision making; social network analysis; confined influence; predilection.
    JEL: C44 C61 D71 D81
    Date: 2018–06–15
  8. By: González, F; Muñoz, P; Prem, M
    Abstract: Dictatorships can affect the functioning of new democracies but the mechanisms are poorly understood. We study the Pinochet dictatorship in Chile using new data and provide two findings. First, mayors appointed by Pinochet obtained a nine percentage point vote premium in the first local election in democracy. This premium is explained by an incumbency advantage and by an increase in local spending during the transition. Second, dictatorship mayors increased the vote share of right-wing political parties in democracy. We conclude that the dictatorship won “hearts and minds” before the transition and successfully maintained part of their political power.
    Keywords: politicians, dictatorship, democracy
    JEL: D2 G2 G3 M2
    Date: 2019–09–19
  9. By: Stöhr, Tobias (Kiel Institute for the World Economy); Wichardt, Philipp (University of Rostock)
    Abstract: This paper connects insights from the literature on cosmopolitan values in political science, anxiety in social psychology, and identity economics in a vignette-style experiment. We asked German respondents about their attitudes towards a Syrian refugee, randomizing components of his description (N=662). The main treatment describes the refugee as being aware of and empathetic towards potential Germans' worries about cultural change, costs and violence associated with refugee inflows. This increases reported levels of sympathy and trust substantially, especially for risk averse people. We argue that acknowledging concerns of the host population relieves the tension between an anxious and a cosmopolitan part of peoples' identities. When one aspect of identity is already acknowledged (expressing anxieties) it has less influence on actual behavior (expressing sympathy). In addition, we find that previous contact with foreigners and a higher willingness to take risks are important factors to determine an individual's willingness to interact with refugees.
    Keywords: identity, integration, attitudes, immigration, refugees
    JEL: F22 Z10 Z12
    Date: 2019–09
  10. By: Van Wolleghem, Pierre Georges; De Angelis, Marina; Scicchitano, Sergio
    Abstract: Whilst migration has become a structural feature of most European countries, the integration of foreigners in the labour market continues to raise concerns. Evidence across countries shows that migrants are more often over-educated than natives. Over the last years, scholarship has intended to capture the effect of informal networks on migrants’ over-education. Interestingly, no study has looked into the Italian case, yet a country for which the effect of networks on education-occupation mismatch is well documented. This article has two objectives: it assesses the extent to which over-education affects migrants and it evaluates the role informal networks play in producing it. We find that foreigners are more over-educated than natives but that the role of networks is consistent across the two groups. Empirical evidence is drawn from the application of quantitative and counter-factual methods to PLUS 2018 – Participation, Labour, Unemployment Survey.
    Keywords: Network,Over-education,Migrants,labour market
    JEL: F22 J61 Z13
    Date: 2019
  11. By: Guillaume Cheikbossian (CEE-M - Centre d'Economie de l'Environnement - Montpellier - FRE2010 - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - UM - Université de Montpellier - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - Montpellier SupAgro - Institut national d’études supérieures agronomiques de Montpellier)
    Abstract: We provide an evolutionary explanation for the well-established evidence of the existence of in-group favoritism in intergroup conflict. Using a model of group contest, we show that the larger the number of groups competing against one another or the larger the degree of complementarity between individual efforts, the more likely group members are altruistic towards their teammates under preference evolution.
    Keywords: Indirect evolutionary approach,Evolutionary stability,Groups,Altruism,Conflicts
    Date: 2019

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