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Ordinal vs cardinal status: Two examples

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  • Bilancini, Ennio
  • Boncinelli, Leonardo

Abstract

We demonstrate that in models where agents have concerns for status the model predictions can drastically change depending on whether status is modelled as an ordinal or cardinal magnitude. As a proof, we show that two well known theoretical findings are not robust to the substitution of ordinal status with cardinal status [Frank, R.H., The Demand for Unobservable and Other Positional Goods. American Economic Review, (75):101-116, 1985.] and viceversa [Clark, A. and Oswald, R.J., Comparison-Concave Utility and Following Behavior in Social and Economic Settings. Journal of Public Economics, (70):133-155, 1998.].

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics Letters.

Volume (Year): 101 (2008)
Issue (Month): 1 (October)
Pages: 17-19

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolet:v:101:y:2008:i:1:p:17-19

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ecolet

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Keywords: D0 Status Social comparison Ordinality Cardinality;

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References

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  1. Samuel Bowles & Yongjin Park, 2003. "Emulation, Inequality, and Work Hours: Was Thorsten Veblen Right," Department of Economics University of Siena 409, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
  2. Cooper, Ben & Garcia-Penalosa, Cecilia & Funk, Peter, 2001. "Status Effects and Negative Utility Growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(473), pages 642-65, July.
  3. Corneo, Giacomo & Jeanne, Olivier, 1998. "Social organization, status, and savings behavior," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 37-51, October.
  4. Andrew Clark & David Masclet & Marie-Claire Villeval, 2006. "Effort, revenu et rang. Une étude expérimentale," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 57(3), pages 635-643.
  5. Veblen, Thorstein, 1899. "The Theory of the Leisure Class," History of Economic Thought Books, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, number veblen1899.
  6. Ed Hopkins & Tatiana Kornienko, 2004. "Running to Keep in the Same Place: Consumer Choice as a Game of Status," ESE Discussion Papers 92, Edinburgh School of Economics, University of Edinburgh.
  7. Cole, Harold L & Mailath, George J & Postlewaite, Andrew, 1992. "Social Norms, Savings Behavior, and Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(6), pages 1092-1125, December.
  8. Fershtman, Chaim & Murphy, Kevin M & Weiss, Yoram, 1996. "Social Status, Education, and Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(1), pages 108-32, February.
  9. Andrew E. Clark & Paul Frijters & Michael A. Shields, 2008. "Relative Income, Happiness, and Utility: An Explanation for the Easterlin Paradox and Other Puzzles," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 46(1), pages 95-144, March.
  10. Clark, Andrew E. & Oswald, Andrew J., 1998. "Comparison-concave utility and following behaviour in social and economic settings," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 133-155, October.
  11. Bagwell, Laurie Simon & Bernheim, B Douglas, 1996. "Veblen Effects in a Theory of Conspicuous Consumption," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 349-73, June.
  12. Frank, Robert H, 1985. "The Demand for Unobservable and Other Nonpositional Goods," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 101-16, March.
  13. Robson, Arthur J, 1992. "Status, the Distribution of Wealth, Private and Social Attitudes to Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(4), pages 837-57, July.
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Cited by:
  1. Ennio Bilancini & Simone D’Alessandro, 2011. "Long-run Welfare under Externalities in Consumption, Leisure, and Production: A Case for Happy Degrowth vs. Unhappy Growth," Department of Economics 0667, University of Modena and Reggio E., Faculty of Economics "Marco Biagi".
  2. Christopher Tsoukis & Frédéric Tournemaine, 2013. "Status In A Canonical Macro Model: Labour Supply, Growth And Inequality," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 81, pages 65-92, October.
  3. Bilancini, Ennio & Boncinelli, Leonardo, 2014. "Instrumental cardinal concerns for social status in two-sided matching with non-transferable utility," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 174-189.
  4. Ennio Bilancini & Leonardo Boncinelli, 2008. "Redistribution and the Notion of Social Status," Center for Economic Research (RECent) 029, University of Modena and Reggio E., Dept. of Economics.
  5. Ennio Bilancini & Massimo D'Antoni, 2008. "Pensions and Intergenerational Risk-Sharing When Relative Consumption Matters," Department of Economics University of Siena 541, Department of Economics, University of Siena.

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