nep-soc New Economics Papers
on Social Norms and Social Capital
Issue of 2022‒11‒28
nine papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. Twitter and Crime: The Effect of Social Movements on GenderBased Violence By Michele Battisti; Ilpo Kauppinen; Britta Rude
  2. Can Social Media Rhetoric Incite Hate Incidents? Evidence from Trump's "Chinese Virus" Tweets By Andy Cao; Jason M. Lindo; Jiee Zhong
  3. The Critical Role of Social Leaders in the Spread of Social Movements against Gender-Based Violence on Twitter By Britta Rude
  4. Bargaining Power and Inheritance Norms: Evidence from Polygamous Households in Nigeria By Jennifer Golan; Alessia Isopi
  5. Gender norms, violence and adolescent girls' trajectories: evidence from a field experiment in India By Alison Andrew; Sonya Krutikova; Gabriela Smarrelli; Hemlata Verma
  6. Perceiving bad apples versus rotten trees: Evidence from the exposure of politician misbehavior in Colombia By Lucía Mendoza Mora
  7. Teaching Norms: Direct Evidence of Parental Transmission By Thijs Brouwer; Fabio Galeotti; Marie Claire Villeval
  8. Crowding Out the Truth? A Simple Model of Misinformation, Polarization and Meaningful Social Interactions By Fabrizio Germano; Vicenç Gómez; Francesco Sobbrio
  9. Does trust in government improve Covid-19's crisis management? By Ablam Estel Apeti

  1. By: Michele Battisti; Ilpo Kauppinen; Britta Rude
    Abstract: This paper asks whether social movements taking place on Twitter affect genderbased violence (GBV). Using Twitter data and machine learning methods, we construct a novel data set on the prevalence of Twitter conversations about GBV. We then link this data to weekly crime reports at the federal state level from the United States. We exploit the high-frequency nature of our data and an event study design to establish a causal impact of Twitter social movements on GBV. Our results point out that Twitter tweets related to GBV lead to a decrease in reported crime rates. The evidence shows that perpetrators commit these crimes less due to increased social pressure and perceived social costs. The results indicate that social media could significantly decrease reported GBV and might facilitate the signaling of social norms.
    Keywords: Economics of gender, US, domestic abuse, public policy, criminal law, illegal behavior and the enforcement of law
    JEL: J12 J16 J78 K14 K42 O51
    Date: 2022
  2. By: Andy Cao; Jason M. Lindo; Jiee Zhong
    Abstract: We investigate whether Donald Trump's "Chinese Virus" tweets contributed to the rise of anti-Asian incidents. We find that the number of incidents spiked following Trump’s initial “Chinese Virus” tweets and the subsequent dramatic rise in internet search activity for the phrase. Difference-in-differences and event-study analyses leveraging spatial variation indicate that this spike in anti-Asian incidents was significantly more pronounced in counties that supported Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election relative to those that supported Hillary Clinton. We estimate that anti-Asian incidents spiked by 4000 percent in Trump-supporting counties, over and above the spike observed in Clinton-supporting counties.
    JEL: H0 I18 J15 K0
    Date: 2022–10
  3. By: Britta Rude
    Abstract: This paper asks how social movements against gender-based violence (GBV) spread on Twitter. To this end, I construct a novel dataset measuring 10 large social movements against GBV on Twitter. I show that these movements start suddenly and fade out quickly and that there is considerable variation at the sub-national level in the US. Twitter users are more likely to share content created by other users instead of creating original content. Text mining the text of tweets reveals that polarization is low and that most users express fear and sadness. Neither polarized nor emotional content does generate more traction in form of likes, retweets, replies or quotes. I develop a novel instrumental variable strategy and show that Twitter users with an established network play a major role in the spread of tweets. An analysis of users’ profile pictures and names reveals low social inclusiveness of these movements. Users are on average female, young, and White. Tweets posted by non-white users generate less traction. Moreover, women are more prone to reference content by women, while the reverse applies to men.
    Keywords: Economics of gender, non-labor discrimination, demographic economics, public policy, social choice, clubs, committees, associations, economic sociology
    JEL: J16 J18 D71 Z13
    Date: 2022
  4. By: Jennifer Golan; Alessia Isopi
    Abstract: We develop a polygamous household model with child labour improving the value of the future inheritable asset. The model predicts that increasing mothers' relative bargaining power increases children’s labour supply, especially when social norms assign a greater inheritance share to the mother's child. Using data from Nigeria and the variation in mothers' bargaining power and inheritance norms, we find that children of the first wife work more than children of other mothers within the polygamous household. This result is more pronounced for boys, landed households and settings where first wives increase their returns to inheritance via their offspring.
    Date: 2022–11
  5. By: Alison Andrew; Sonya Krutikova; Gabriela Smarrelli; Hemlata Verma
    Abstract: Striking gender gaps persist in fundamental aspects of human welfare. In India, the setting of this paper, these gaps are particularly large. Interventions often target adolescent girls with the aim of empowering them to make choices that go against the status quo - to remain in school longer or marry later, for example. This approach may inadvertently expose girls, who are often marginalized within their communities, to new risks if it encourages them to violate prevailing gender norms. In this study, we design an experiment to compare the effectiveness of targeting only adolescent girls with an approach that additionally engages with the enforcers of gender norms in the wider community. We find that both arms of the trial led to a reduction in school dropout and early marriage. We see large improvements in girls' mental health but only in the arm which engages with the wider community. Improvements in mental health can be explained by community engagement causing gender norms to become more progressive and causing a reduction in the severity of sanctions that girls face for breaking norms. Both adolescent girls and their mothers perceived these shifts in norms and sanctions. Our results demonstrate that in settings where unequal outcomes are sustained through restrictive gender norms, change in the attitudes and behavior of the enforcers of these norms is critical for achieving meaningful improvements in womens well-being.
    Date: 2022–09–08
  6. By: Lucía Mendoza Mora
    Abstract: This paper studies the effects of disclosing information about politician misbehavior on trust in public institutions. I use news bulletins from the main anti-corruption agency in Colombia announcing disciplinary prosecutions against municipal mayors. I exploit the timing of the bulletin's publication as a source of variation on the information about the mayor's misbehavior. Using a difference-in-difference framework, I find that news of the prosecution led to increased trust in judicial institutions. However, the effects on confidence in the political system depend on whether citizens perceive the prosecuted mayor as an individual transgressor or as representative of political institutions that are persistently led by questionable individuals. In the former case, the bulletin's publication increased support for the political system. In the latter, it diminished trust in the elections, political parties and Congress. These findings highlight the sophistication of citizens' judgements in response to information on institutional performance.
    Keywords: Trust, Public Institutions, Corruption
    JEL: D73 H11 D80
    Date: 2022–10–27
  7. By: Thijs Brouwer (Department of economics, Tilburg University - Tilburg University [Netherlands]); Fabio Galeotti (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); 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,Norm Enforcement.
    Date: 2022
  8. By: Fabrizio Germano; Vicenç Gómez; Francesco Sobbrio
    Abstract: This paper provides a simple theoretical framework to evaluate the effect of key parameters of ranking algorithms, namely popularity and personalization parameters, on measures of platform engagement, misinformation and polarization. The results show that an increase in the weight assigned to online social interactions (e.g., likes and shares) and to personalized content may increase engagement on the social media platform, while at the same time increasing misinformation and/or polarization. By exploiting Facebook’s 2018 “Meaningful Social Interactions” algorithmic ranking update, we also provide direct empirical support for some of the main predictions of the model.
    Keywords: algorithmic gatekeeper, ranking algorithms, popularity ranking, personalized ranking, meaningful social interactions, engagement, polarization, misinformation
    JEL: D72 D83 L82 L86
    Date: 2022
  9. By: Ablam Estel Apeti (CERDI - Centre d'Études et de Recherches sur le Développement International - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UCA - Université Clermont Auvergne)
    Abstract: Countries have adopted several measures to control the spread of Covid-19. However, substantial differences remain in terms of performance in controlling the virus, potentially due to heterogeneity in citizen engagement with government measures. Although the literature documents the effects of trust in government on compliance with health restrictions related to the health crisis, little is said about the direct effect of trust in government on managing the Covid-19 crisis, defined as the number of cases and deaths. Drawing on this observation, this paper seeks to analyze the effect of pre-crisis ties, particularly trust in government, on crisis management, proxied by the number of Covid-19 cases and deaths per million population. We examine this question based on a sample of 41 countries for which data are available and using the Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) method. Results reveal that a high level of trust in government predicts better crisis management in terms of relatively low levels of cases and deaths. These results, which successfully pass a series of robustness tests, may vary according to level of contamination and increase with time. This paper, therefore, suggests that building trust between the public and the authorities, essentially governments and citizens, is essential for crisis management, taking the example of the Covid-19 pandemic.
    Keywords: E71,H12,I12,I18,I38,Z18 Covid-19,containment measures,trust in government,recovery plans
    Date: 2022–09–21

This nep-soc issue is ©2022 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.
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