Are People Inequality-Averse, or Just Risk-Averse?
Individuals' preferences for risk and inequality are measured through choices between imagined societies and lotteries. The median relative risk aversion, which is often seen to reflect social inequality aversion, is between 2 and 3. Most people are also found to be "individually" inequality-averse, reflecting a willingness to pay for living in a more equal society. Left-wing voters and women are both more risk and inequality-averse than others. The model allows for non-monotonic SWFs, implying that welfare may decrease with an individual's income at high-income levels, which is illustrated in simulations based on the empirical results. Copyright (c) The London School of Economics and Political Science 2005.
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Volume (Year): 72 (2005)
Issue (Month): 3 (08)
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