Endogenous Indoctrination: Occupational Choice, the Evolution of Beliefs, and the Political Economy of Reform
AbstractMuch of the political economy analysis of reform focuses on the conflict of interest between groups that stand to gain or lose from the competing policy proposals. In reality, there is also a lot of disagreement about the working of the policy: in addition to conflicting interests, conflicting views play an important role. Those views are shaped in part by an educational bureaucracy. It is documented that the beliefs of that bureaucracy differ substantially from those of the broader constituency. I analyse a model where this effect originates in the self-selection of workers in the educational occupation, and is partly reinforced by the insulation of the educational profession from the real economy (an effect which had been discussed by Hayek). The bias makes it harder for the population to learn the true parameters of the economy if these are favourable to the market economy. Two parameters that govern this capacity to learn are social entropy and heritability. Social entropy defines how predictable one’s occupation is as a function of one’s beliefs. Heritability is the weight of the family’s beliefs in the determination of the priors of a new generation. Both heritability and social entropy reduce the bias and makes it easier to learn that the market economy is "good", under the assumption that it is. Finally I argue that the capacity to learn from experience is itself affected by economic institutions. A society which does not trust markets is more likely to favour labour market rigidities that in turn reduces the exposure of individuals to the market economy, and thus their ability to learn from experience. This in turn reinforces the weight of the educational system in the formation of beliefs, thus validating the initial presumption against the market economy. This sustains an equilibrium where beliefs and institutions reinforce each other in slowing or preventing people from learning the correct underlying parameters.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 7335.
Date of creation: Jun 2009
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Centre for Economic Policy Research, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ
Phone: 44 - 20 - 7183 8801
Fax: 44 - 20 - 7183 8820
Other versions of this item:
- Gilles Saint-Paul, 2010. "Endogenous Indoctrination: Occupational Choices, the Evolution of Beliefs and the Political Economy of Reforms," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(544), pages 325-353, 05.
- Saint-Paul, Gilles, 2009. "Endogenous Indoctrination: Occupational Choice, the Evolution of Beliefs, and the Political Economy of Reform," TSE Working Papers 09-033, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
- Saint-Paul, Gilles, 2009. "Endogenous Indoctrination: Occupational Choice, the Evolution of Beliefs, and the Political Economy of Reform," IZA Discussion Papers 4468, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Saint-Paul, Gilles, 2009. "Endogenous Indoctrination: Occupational Choice, the Evolution of Beliefs, and the Political Economy of Reform," IDEI Working Papers 556, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
- I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
- J45 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Public Sector Labor Markets
- P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
- P5 - Economic Systems - - Comparative Economic Systems
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Roland Bénabou & Efe A. Ok, 2001.
"Social Mobility And The Demand For Redistribution: The Poum Hypothesis,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
MIT Press, vol. 116(2), pages 447-487, May.
- Bénabou, Roland & Ok, Efe, 1997. "Social Mobility and the Demand for Redistribution : the POUM Hypothesis," IDEI Working Papers 78, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse, revised 1999.
- Benabou, R. & Ok, E.A., 1998. "Social Mobility and the Demand for Redistribution: The POUM Hypothesis," Working Papers 98-23, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
- Bénabou, Roland & Ok, Efe A, 1998. "Social Mobility and the Demand for Redistribution: the POUM Hypothesis," CEPR Discussion Papers 1955, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Roland Benabou & Efe A. Ok, 1998. "Social Mobility and the Demand for Redistribution: The POUM Hypothesis," NBER Working Papers 6795, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- La Ferrara, Eliana & Alesina, Alberto, 2005. "Preferences for Redistribution in the Land of Opportunities," Scholarly Articles 4552533, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 2001.
"Preferences for Redistribution in the Land of Opportunities,"
NBER Working Papers
8267, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Alesina, Alberto & La Ferrara, Eliana, 2005. "Preferences for redistribution in the land of opportunities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(5-6), pages 897-931, June.
- Alesina, Alberto F & La Ferrara, Eliana, 2002. "Preferences for Redistribution in the Land of Opportunities," CEPR Discussion Papers 3155, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 2001. "Preferences for Redistribution in the Land of Opportunities," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1936, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, . "Preferences for Redistribution in the Land of Opportunities," Working Papers 178, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- Policy inertia through educational elites
by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2009-11-24 15:43:00
- The (changing?) role of the intellectuals
by Pedro S. Martins in The Portuguese Economy on 2011-04-25 22:28:00
- Tilman Klumpp & Xuejuan Su, 2013. "A theory of perceived discrimination," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 53(1), pages 153-180, May.
- Friedrich Heinemann & Theocharis Grigoriadis, 2013. "Origins of Reform Resistance and the Southern European Regime," WWWforEurope Working Papers series 20, WWWforEurope.
- Radu Vranceanu & Jérôme Barthélémy, 2011.
"Knowledge in economics and economic reform : an analysis of French survey data,"
- Vranceanu, Radu & Barthélémy, Jérôme, 2011. "Knowledge in economics and economic reform : An analysis of French survey data," ESSEC Working Papers WP1103, ESSEC Research Center, ESSEC Business School.
- Fuchs-Schündeln, Nicola & Masella, Paolo, 2013. "Long-Lasting Effects of Socialist Education," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79865, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
- Etienne Farvaque & Alexander Mihailov & Alireza Naghavi, 2011. "The Grand Experiment of Communism: Discovering the Trade-off between Equality and Efficiency," Economics & Management Discussion Papers em-dp2011-02, Henley Business School, Reading University, revised 10 Dec 2012.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.