IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/bla/reviec/v14y2006i3p494-507.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Modeling Cultural Barriers in International Trade

Author

Listed:
  • István Kónya

Abstract

The paper presents a model that analyzes the role of cultural differences in international trade. The decision to study foreign cultures and languages is incorporated into a simple trade model, which captures basic properties of cultural and language barriers. First, cultural costs differ from physical ones in that they can be eliminated by learning. Secondly, learning a language has economies of scale, thus smaller countries tend to invest more into learning. Thirdly, learning decisions within one country impose an externality on trading partners, since learning by one party makes communication easier also for the other one. This implies that learning decisions are in general inefficient, and the paper derives the connection between the equilibrium and optimal outcomes. Finally, because of the substitutability of learning among countries, a policy where a country subsidizes learning in the other nation-"cultural protectionism"-can be rationalized. Under certain conditions, such a policy can improve the welfare of both countries, in contrast to the case of regular export subsidies. Copyright © 2006 The Author; Journal compilation © 2006 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • István Kónya, 2006. "Modeling Cultural Barriers in International Trade," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(3), pages 494-507, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:reviec:v:14:y:2006:i:3:p:494-507
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/links/doi/10.1111/j.1467-9396.2006.00626.x
    File Function: link to full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth Rogoff, 2001. "The Six Major Puzzles in International Macroeconomics: Is There a Common Cause?," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2000, Volume 15, pages 339-412 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, "undated". "The Productivity of Nations," Working Papers 96012, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
    3. Krugman, Paul, 1980. "Scale Economies, Product Differentiation, and the Pattern of Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 950-959, December.
    4. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(3), pages 297-308, June.
    5. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2001. "Borders, Trade and Welfare," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 508, Boston College Department of Economics.
    6. Deardoff, A.V., 1995. "Determinants of Bilateral Trade: Does Gravity Work in a Neoclassical World?," Working Papers 382, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
    7. Alan Deardorff, 1998. "Determinants of Bilateral Trade: Does Gravity Work in a Neoclassical World?," NBER Chapters,in: The Regionalization of the World Economy, pages 7-32 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Edward P. Lazear, 1999. "Culture and Language," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(S6), pages 95-126, December.
    9. John F. Helliwell, 1997. "National Borders, Trade and Migration," NBER Working Papers 6027, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. James E. Rauch & Alessandra Casella, 1998. "Overcoming Informational Barriers to International Resource Allocation: Prices and Group Ties," NBER Working Papers 6628, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Kandogan, Yener, 2011. "Determinants of individuals' preference for cross-cultural literacy: Role of international trade potential," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 328-336, July.
    2. Jaeok Park, 2015. "Cultural Barriers in International Trade and the," Korean Economic Review, Korean Economic Association, vol. 31, pages 267-300.
    3. James Foreman-Peck & Peng Zhou, 2015. "Firm-Level Evidence for the Language Investment Effect on SME Exporters," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 62(4), pages 351-377, September.
    4. Alexander M. Danzer & Firat Yaman, 2013. "Do Ethnic Enclaves Impede Immigrants' Integration? Evidence from a Quasi-experimental Social-interaction Approach," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(2), pages 311-325, May.
    5. Istvan Konya, 2001. "Optimal Immigration, Assimilation and Trade," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 507, Boston College Department of Economics.
    6. Aurélien Portuese, 2012. "Law and economics of the European multilingualism," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 34(2), pages 279-325, October.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • H2 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:reviec:v:14:y:2006:i:3:p:494-507. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=0965-7576 .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.