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Peers and culture


Sáez-Martí, María; Sjögren, Anna (2008). Peers and culture. Scandinavian Journal of Economics, 110(1):73-92.

Abstract

We analyze the evolution of cultural traits when parents purposefully invest resources in order to socialize their children to the cultural variants that maximize child lifetime utility. We assume that children are not passive in their adoption of traits from peers. Instead they are guided by an evaluation of the merit of variants. We show that such evaluation is likely to render this process of "oblique transmission" biased. We then show that when transmission of traits from society is biased or frequency dependent, cultural diversity is sustainable even when all parents strive to transmit the same trait. We also show that demand for cultural pluralism on the part of parent does not guarantee cultural diversity.

We analyze the evolution of cultural traits when parents purposefully invest resources in order to socialize their children to the cultural variants that maximize child lifetime utility. We assume that children are not passive in their adoption of traits from peers. Instead they are guided by an evaluation of the merit of variants. We show that such evaluation is likely to render this process of "oblique transmission" biased. We then show that when transmission of traits from society is biased or frequency dependent, cultural diversity is sustainable even when all parents strive to transmit the same trait. We also show that demand for cultural pluralism on the part of parent does not guarantee cultural diversity.

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9 citations in Web of Science®
12 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Language:English
Date:March 2008
Deposited On:14 May 2008 09:18
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:23
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN:0347-0520
Publisher DOI:10.1111/j.1467-9442.2008.00525.x
Related URLs:http://dx.doi.org/10.5167/uzh-52303
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-2489

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