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Punctuality - A Cultural Trait as Equilibrium

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Author Info

  • Basu, Kaushik

    (Department of Economics)

  • Weibull, Jörgen W.

    ()
    (The Research Institute of Industrial Economics)

Abstract

A people's culture, norms and habits are important determinants not just of the quality of social life but of economic progress and growth. In this paper we take the view that while the importance of culture is undeniable, the innateness of culture is not. We work here with a single example and demonstrate how a human trait which is widely believed to be cultural is at the same time a matter of choice. The example that we shall work with concerns punctuality. We show that punctuality may be simply an equilibrium response of individuals to what they expect others to do. The same society can get caught in a punctual equilibrium or a non-punctual equilibrium.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Research Institute of Industrial Economics in its series Working Paper Series with number 582.

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Length: 18 pages
Date of creation: 10 Jun 2002
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published as the book Punctuality - A Cultural Trait as an Equilibrium, 2003, in R. Arnott et al. (eds.), Economics for an Imperfect World: Essays in Honor of Joseph Stiglitz, MIT Press, Cambridge USA.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:iuiwop:0582

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Postal: Research Institute of Industrial Economics, Box 55665, SE-102 15 Stockholm, Sweden
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Related research

Keywords: Punctuality; Coordination Games;

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References

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  1. M. Kandori & G. Mailath & R. Rob, 1999. "Learning, Mutation and Long Run Equilibria in Games," Levine's Working Paper Archive 500, David K. Levine.
  2. Kohlberg, Elon & Mertens, Jean-Francois, 1986. "On the Strategic Stability of Equilibria," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(5), pages 1003-37, September.
  3. John C. Harsanyi & Reinhard Selten, 1988. "A General Theory of Equilibrium Selection in Games," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262582384, December.
  4. Carlsson, Hans & Ganslandt, Mattias, 1998. "Noisy equilibrium selection in coordination games," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 23-34, July.
  5. Bryant, John, 1983. "A Simple Rational Expectations Keynes-Type Model," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(3), pages 525-28, August.
  6. Young, H Peyton, 1993. "The Evolution of Conventions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(1), pages 57-84, January.
  7. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1973. "The Theory of 'Screening', Education, and the Distribution of Income," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 354, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  8. Jorgen W. Weibull, 1997. "Evolutionary Game Theory," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262731215, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Basu, Kaushik & Guha, Ashok, 2009. "How Sapient is Homo Economicus? The Evolutionary Origins of Trade, Ethics and Economic Rationality," Working Papers 09-14, Cornell University, Center for Analytic Economics.

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