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The religious transition - A long-run perspective

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  • Erich Gundlach

    (Kiel Institute for the World Economy, Germany)

  • Martin Paldam

    ()
    (School of Economics and Management, University of Aarhus, Denmark)

Abstract

We use factor analysis to derive a robust measure of religiosity from items reported in five waves of the World Value Survey. Our measure of religiosity is negatively correlated with per capita income. Development apparently causes religiosity to fall to about half its pre-modern level. Most components of the demand for religion are reduced by development. The supply of religion declines once churches lose control over the institutions providing collective goods like education, health, and social security. These goods used to be supplied by churches jointly with religious services but tend to be supplied by the state with rising levels of develop¬ment. Aspects of supply and demand are integrated in a CES production function framework that can explain the direction of causality in the observed negative correlation between income and religiosity.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by School of Economics and Management, University of Aarhus in its series Economics Working Papers with number 2009-15.

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Length: 36
Date of creation: 04 Dec 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:aah:aarhec:2009-15

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Web page: http://www.econ.au.dk/afn/

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Keywords: Levels of development; religiosity; biogeography;

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References

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  1. Erich Gundlach & Martin Paldam, 2008. "The Transition of Corruption: From Poverty to Honesty," Kiel Working Papers 1411, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  2. Lipford, Jody & McCormick, Robert E. & Tollison, Robert D., 1993. "Preaching matters," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 235-250, August.
  3. Laurence R. Iannaccone, 1998. "Introduction to the Economics of Religion," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(3), pages 1465-1495, September.
  4. William A Masters and Margaret S McMillan, 2000. "Climate and Scale in Economic Growth," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/2000-13, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  5. Rachel M. McCleary & Robert J. Barro, 2006. "Religion and Economy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(2), pages 49-72, Spring.
  6. Robert B. Ekelund Jr. & Robert F. Hebert & Robert D. Tollison, 2008. "The Marketplace of Christianity," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262550717, December.
  7. Krueger, Anne O, 1996. " Political Economy of Agricultural Policy," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 87(1-2), pages 163-75, April.
  8. Martin Paldam & Erich Gundlach, 2008. "Two Views on Institutions and Development: The Grand Transition vs the Primacy of Institutions," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(1), pages 65-100, 02.
  9. Erich Gundlach & Martin Paldam, 2008. "A Farewell to Critical Junctures: Sorting Out Long-run Causality of Income and Democracy," Kiel Working Papers 1410, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  10. Olsson, Ola & Hibbs, Douglas Jr., 2005. "Biogeography and long-run economic development," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(4), pages 909-938, May.
  11. Opfinger, Matthias, 2011. "Religious Market Theory vs. Secularization: The Role of Religious Diversity Revisited," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-475, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
  12. Azzi, Corry & Ehrenberg, Ronald G, 1975. "Household Allocation of Time and Church Attendance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(1), pages 27-56, February.
  13. Laurence R. Iannaccone, 1998. "Corrigenda [Introduction to the Economics of Religion]," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(4), pages 1941-1941, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Erich Gundlach & Matthias Opfinger, 2012. "Religiosity as a determinant of happiness," Research Papers in Economics 2012-06, University of Trier, Department of Economics.
  2. Harttgen, Kenneth & Opfinger, Matthias, 2013. "National Identity and Religious Diversity," MPRA Paper 50151, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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