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Selfish and Indoctrinated Economists?


Frey, Bruno S; Meier, Stephan (2002). Selfish and Indoctrinated Economists? Working paper series / Institute for Empirical Research in Economics No. 103, University of Zurich.

Abstract

Many people believe that economists in general are more selfish than other people and that this greater selfishness is due to economics education. This paper offers empirical evidence against this widely held belief. Using a unique data set on giving behaviour in connection with two social funds at the University of Zurich, it is shown that economics education does not make people act more selfishly. Rather, this natural experiment suggests that the particular behaviour of economists can be explained by a selection effect.

Abstract

Many people believe that economists in general are more selfish than other people and that this greater selfishness is due to economics education. This paper offers empirical evidence against this widely held belief. Using a unique data set on giving behaviour in connection with two social funds at the University of Zurich, it is shown that economics education does not make people act more selfishly. Rather, this natural experiment suggests that the particular behaviour of economists can be explained by a selection effect.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Working Paper
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
Working Paper Series > Institute for Empirical Research in Economics (former)
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Language:English
Date:January 2002
Deposited On:29 Nov 2011 21:26
Last Modified:25 Oct 2018 03:09
Series Name:Working paper series / Institute for Empirical Research in Economics
ISSN:1424-0459
OA Status:Green
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s10657-005-5425-8
Official URL:http://www.econ.uzh.ch/wp.html
Related URLs:https://www.zora.uzh.ch/id/eprint/156103/

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