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Dynamic Models of Religious Conformity and Conversion: Theory and Calibrations

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  • Oz Shy
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Abstract

This paper develops behavioral and deterministic overlapping generations models to explain and simulate changes in the proportion of secular and religious people. Under the behavioral approach, the role of the church is to generate an externality associated with the investment in enhancing the conformity rate among young believers. Under the deterministic approach, changes in the number of nonbelievers are explained by different birth rates among secular and religious parents as well as the relative proportion of nonconformists among the young in each group. This model is then used to calibrate for (non)conformity rates among secular and religious people. ZUSAMMENFASSUNG - (Dynamische Modelle religiöser Konformität und Konversion: Theorie und Simulationen) Diese Arbeit entwickelt deterministische und Verhaltensmodelle mit überlappenden Generationen, welche die Veränderungen des Zahlenverhältnisses von nicht religiösen zu religiösen Menschen erklären und simulieren. Im Verhaltensansatz wird aufgezeigt, dass der Kirche die Aufgabe zukommt, einen externen Effekt zu erzeugen, der dafür sorgt, dass junge Gläubige mit der Glaubenseinstellung ihrer Eltern konform gehen. Der deterministische Ansatz erklärt die Veränderungen in der Anzahl Nichtgläubiger einerseits mit den unterschiedlichen Geburtenraten unter nichtgläubigen Eltern im Vergleich zu religiösen Eltern und andererseits durch den relativen Anteil von Nichtkonformen unter der jungen Generation in jeder Gruppe. Dieses Modell wird verwandt, um (Nicht-)Konformitätsraten--nach denen junge Menschen ihren Eltern im Glauben folgen oder nicht--innerhalb der Gruppen weltlicher sowie religiöser Menschen zu berechnen.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin (WZB), Research Unit: Competition and Innovation (CIG) in its series CIG Working Papers with number SP II 2005-12.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2005
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Publication status: Forthcoming in the European Economic Review .
Handle: RePEc:wzb:wzebiv:spii2005-12

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Related research

Keywords: Conversion; Religious conformity; Role of the Church; Nonconformity; Nonreligious people; Religious Affiliation; Parents’ education; Believers; Nonbelievers.;

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References

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  1. Bisin, A. & Verdier, T., 1999. "Beyond the Melting Pot : Cultural Transmission, Marriage, and the Evolution of Ethnic and Religious Traits," DELTA Working Papers 1999-10, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  2. Weiss, Yoram & Fershtman, Chaim, 1998. "Social status and economic performance:: A survey," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-5), pages 801-820, May.
  3. Häckner, Jonas & Nyberg, Sten, 1992. "Vanity and Congestion: A Study of Reciprocal Externalities," Working Paper Series 354, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  4. Iannaccone, Laurence R, 1992. "Sacrifice and Stigma: Reducing Free-Riding in Cults, Communes, and Other Collectives," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(2), pages 271-91, April.
  5. Lehrer, Evelyn L, 1996. "Religion as a Determinant of Marital Fertility," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 173-96, May.
  6. Shy,Oz, 2001. "The Economics of Network Industries," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521800952, April.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. Corneo, Giacomo & Jeanne, Olivier, 1997. "Snobs, bandwagons, and the origin of social customs in consumer behavior," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 333-347, March.
  10. Nuno Garoupa & Pedro Pita Barros, 2001. "An economic theory of church strictness," Economics Working Papers 563, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  11. Evelyn L. Lehrer, 2004. "Religion as a Determinant of Economic and Demographic Behavior in the United States," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 30(4), pages 707-726.
  12. McCleary, Rachel & Barro, Robert, 2005. "Which Countries Have State Religions?," Scholarly Articles 3710663, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  13. Laurence R. Iannaccone, 1998. "Introduction to the Economics of Religion," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(3), pages 1465-1495, September.
  14. Stark, Rodney & Iannaccone, Laurence R & Finke, Roger, 1996. "Religion, Science, and Rationality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 433-37, May.
  15. Bernheim, B Douglas, 1994. "A Theory of Conformity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(5), pages 841-77, October.
  16. William Mosher & Linda Williams & David Johnson, 1992. "Religion and fertility in the United States: New patterns," Demography, Springer, vol. 29(2), pages 199-214, May.
  17. GRILO, Isabel & SHY, Oz & THISSE, Jacques-François, 1997. "Price competition when consumer behavior is characterized by conformity or vanity," CORE Discussion Papers 1997032, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  18. Jackson, Matthew O. & Watts, Alison, 2002. "The Evolution of Social and Economic Networks," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 106(2), pages 265-295, October.
  19. Alberto Bisin & Giorgio Topa & Thierry Verdier, 2004. "Religious Intermarriage and Socialization in the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(3), pages 615-664, June.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Pablo Brañas-Garza & Teresa García-Muñoz & Shoshana Neuman, 2007. "Unravelling Secularization: an International Study," Papers on Economics of Religion 07/05, Department of Economic Theory and Economic History of the University of Granada..
  2. Ronen Bar-El & Teresa García-Muñoz & Shoshana Neuman & Yossef Tobol, 2010. "The Evolution of Secularization: Cultural Transmission, Religion and Fertility Theory, Simulations and Evidence," Working Papers 2010-10, Department of Economics, Bar-Ilan University.
  3. Oz Shy, 2010. "A short survey of network economics," Working Papers 10-3, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.

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