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Status Aspirations, Wealth Inequality, and Economic Growth

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  • Oded Stark

Abstract

This paper argues that an increase in the inequality of wealth prompts a stronger quest for status that in turn fosters the accumulation of wealth. It proposes a measure for an individual's want of social status. For a given level of a population's wealth, the corresponding aggregate measure of want of social status is shown to be positively related to the Gini coefficient of wealth inequality. Hence, the Gini coefficient and growth are positively correlated, holding the population's wealth constant. Copyright � 2006 The Authors; Journal compilation � 2006 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Review of Development Economics.

Volume (Year): 10 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 (02)
Pages: 171-176

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Handle: RePEc:bla:rdevec:v:10:y:2006:i:1:p:171-176

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  1. Gaspart, Frederic & Seki, Erika, 2003. "Cooperation, status seeking and competitive behaviour: theory and evidence," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 51-77, May.
  2. Stark, Oded, 1990. "A Relative Deprivation Approach to Performance Incentives in Career Games and Other Contests," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(2), pages 211-27.
  3. Fishman, Arthur & Simhon, Avi, 2002. " The Division of Labor, Inequality and Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 117-36, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Clark, Andrew E. & Frijters, Paul & Shields, Michael A., 2007. "Relative Income, Happiness and Utility: An Explanation for the Easterlin Paradox and Other Puzzles," IZA Discussion Papers 2840, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Phu Nguyen-Van & Thi Kim Cuong Pham, 2008. "Endogenous Fiscal Policies, Environmental Quality, and Status-Seeking Behavior," Working Papers 29, Development and Policies Research Center (DEPOCEN), Vietnam.
  3. Baochun Peng, 2008. "Relative deprivation, wealth inequality and economic growth," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 94(3), pages 223-229, September.

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