nep-soc New Economics Papers
on Social Norms and Social Capital
Issue of 2022‒08‒29
seven papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. Gendered Language and Gendered Violence By Davis, Lewis; Mavisakalyan, Astghik; Weber, Clas
  2. Teaching Norms: Direct Evidence of Parental Transmission By Thijs Brouwer; Fabio Galeotti; Marie Claire Villeval
  3. The Origins of Elite Persistence: Evidence from Political Purges in post-World War II France * By Toke Aidt; Jean Lacroix; Pierre-Guillaume Méon
  4. Flow of Ideas: Economic Societies and the Rise of Useful Knowledge By Francesco Cinnirella; Erik Hornung; Julius Koschnick
  5. The Social Construction of Ignorance: Experimental Evidence By Ivan Soraperra; Joël van der Weele; Marie Claire Villeval; Shaul Shalvi
  6. The Signaling Value of Social Identity By Arnaud Wolff
  7. Profits, Pandemics, and Lockdown Effectiveness in Nursing Home Networks By Pongou, Roland; Sidie, Ghislain Junior; Tchuente, Guy; Tondji, Jean-Baptiste

  1. By: Davis, Lewis; Mavisakalyan, Astghik; Weber, Clas
    Abstract: This study establishes the influence of sex-based grammatical gender on gendered violence. We demonstrate a statistically significant relationship between gendered language and the incidence of intimate partner violence in a cross-section of countries. Motivated by this evidence, we conduct an individual-level analysis exploiting the differences in the language structures spoken by individuals with a shared religious and ethnic background residing in the same country. We show that speaking a gendered language is associated with the belief that intimate partner violence is justifiable. Our results are consistent with the theoretical possibility that gendered language activates gender schemata in the minds of speakers, increasing the salience of gender distinctions and existing gender norms which legitimize gendered violence.
    Keywords: gender,language,cultural norms,intimate partner violence
    JEL: J12 Z13 D83
    Date: 2022
  2. By: Thijs Brouwer (Department of economics, Tilburg University - Tilburg University [Netherlands]); Fabio Galeotti; Marie Claire Villeval (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: We examine the educative role played by parents in social norm transmission. Using a field experiment, we study whether parents enforce and comply more with norms when their children are present compared to when they are not. We compare similar parents when or after they bring or pick up their children at school. We find that parents accompanying children, in contrast to parents alone, are more likely to punish norm violators and to provide help to strangers when there is no violation. They also tend to substitute more direct punishment with withholding help as a means of indirect punishment.
    Keywords: Field Experiment,Social Norms,Transmission,Parenting
    Date: 2022–07–17
  3. By: Toke Aidt (Faculty of Economics - CAM - University of Cambridge [UK]); Jean Lacroix (RITM - Réseaux Innovation Territoires et Mondialisation - Université Paris-Saclay); Pierre-Guillaume Méon (Centre d'Etudes Economiques et Sociales de l'Environnement-Centre Emile Bernheim - ULB - Université libre de Bruxelles)
    Abstract: This paper studies a new mechanism that allows political elites from a non-democratic regime to survive a democratic transition: connections. We document this mechanism in the transition from the Vichy regime to democracy in post-World War II France. The parliamentarians who had supported the Vichy regime were purged in a two-stage process where each case was judged twice by two different courts. Using a difference-indifferences strategy, we show that Law graduates, a powerful social group in French politics with strong connections to one of the two courts, had a clearance rate that was 10 percentage points higher than others. This facilitated the persistence of that elite group. A systematic analysis of 17,589 documents from the defendants' dossiers is consistent with the hypothesis that the connections of Law graduates to one of the two courts were a major driver of their ability to avoid the purge. We consider and rule out alternative mechanisms.
    Keywords: Purges,Political transitions,Elite persistence,Connections JEL Codes: D73,K40,N44,P48
    Date: 2022–05–24
  4. By: Francesco Cinnirella; Erik Hornung; Julius Koschnick
    Abstract: Economic societies emerged during the late eighteenth-century. We argue that these institutions reduced the costs of accessing useful knowledge by adopting, producing, and diffusing new ideas. Combining location information for the universe of 3,300 members across active economic societies in Germany with those of patent holders and World’s Fair exhibitors, we show that regions with more members were more innovative in the late nineteenth-century. This long-lasting effect of societies arguably arose through agglomeration economies and localized knowledge spillovers. To support this claim, we provide evidence suggesting an immediate increase in manufacturing, an earlier establishment of vocational schools, and a higher density of highly skilled mechanical workers by mid-nineteenth century in regions with more members. We also show that regions with members from the same society had higher similarity in patenting, suggesting that social networks facilitated spatial knowledge diffusion and, to some extent, shaped the geography of innovation.
    Keywords: economic societies, useful knowledge, knowledge diffusion, innovation, social networks
    JEL: N33 O33 O31 O43
    Date: 2022
  5. By: Ivan Soraperra; Joël van der Weele; Marie Claire Villeval (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Shaul Shalvi
    Abstract: We experimentally study the social transmission of "inconvenient" information about the externalities generated by one's own decision. In the laboratory, we pair uninformed decision makers with informed senders. Compared to a setting where subjects can choose their information directly, we find that social interactions increase selfish decisions. On the supply side, senders suppress almost 30 percent of "inconvenient" information, driven by their own preferences for information and their beliefs about the decision maker's preferences. On the demand side, about one-third of decision makers avoids senders who transmit inconvenient information ("shooting the messenger"), which leads to assortative matching between information-suppressing senders and information-avoiding decision makers. Having more control over information generates opposing effects on behavior: selfish decision makers remain ignorant more often and donate less, while altruistic decision makers seek out informative senders and give more. We discuss applications to information sharing in social networks and to organizational design.
    Keywords: Social interactions,information avoidance,assortative matching,ethical behavior
    Date: 2022–07–17
  6. By: Arnaud Wolff
    Abstract: This paper proposes a theory of social identity adoption and expression, which ties the choice of social identity to material and social benefits present in an individual’s social environment. I argue that in an environment in which receivers aim at uncovering the sender’s motives and commitments, the beliefs and values adopted by an individual can serve as a signal of trustworthiness. In such an environment, individuals are expected to adopt the social identity which will provide them with the greatest amount of (social) benefits. I formalize this choice in a game-theoretic framework, embed in a broader niche selection structure. I argue that the main predictions of the model help illuminate several empirical findings, such as the malleability of beliefs and values, the resistance of beliefs and values to evidence, and the existing correlation between beliefs and values and individual-level traits such as personality.
    Keywords: Social Identity, Beliefs, Values, Trustworthiness, Social Incentives.
    JEL: C72 C73 D83 D91
    Date: 2022
  7. By: Pongou, Roland; Sidie, Ghislain Junior; Tchuente, Guy; Tondji, Jean-Baptiste
    Abstract: How do pandemics affect for-profit and not-for-profit organizations differently? To address this question, we analyze optimal lockdowns in a two-sector continuous-time individual-based mean-field epidemiological model. We uncover a unique solution that depends on network structure, lockdown effectiveness, and the planner's tolerable infection incidence. Using unique data on nursing home networks in the United States, we calibrate the model and jointly quantify state-level lockdown effectiveness and preference for enforcing stringent containment strategies during the COVID-19 pandemic. We also empirically validate simulation results derived from the theoretical analyses. We find that for-profit nursing homes experience higher COVID-19 death rates than not-for-profit nursing homes. In addition, this differential health effect increases with lockdown effectiveness.
    Keywords: Pandemics,Profits,Social networks,Lockdown effectiveness,Nursing Homes
    JEL: D85 E61 H12 I18 J14
    Date: 2022

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