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Social Status, Culture and Economic Performance

  • Fershtman, Chaim
  • Weiss, Yoram

Cultural differences among societies may translate into different social status of occupations and can, therefore, affect the workers' choice of education and occupation and, consequently, the equilibrium level of output and wages. Conversely, the economic choices of individuals influence the social status of occupations. This paper constructs a general equilibrium model in which both wages and status are determined endogenously. The authors show that changes in the demand for status, triggered by changes in preferences or income distribution, influence the wage structure, the level of aggregate output, and economic welfare. Copyright 1993 by Royal Economic Society.

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Article provided by Royal Economic Society in its journal The Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 103 (1993)
Issue (Month): 419 (July)
Pages: 946-59

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Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:103:y:1993:i:419:p:946-59
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  1. Fershtman, C. & Weiss, Y., 1991. "Social Status , Culture and Economic Performance," Papers 32-91, Tel Aviv.
  2. Yoram Weiss & Lee A. Lillard, 1976. "Experience, Vintage and Time Effects in the Growth of Earnings: AmericanScientists, 1960-1970," NBER Working Papers 0138, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Benabou, R., 1991. "Location, Education, and Production," Working papers 582, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Baumol, William J, 1990. "Entrepreneurship: Productive, Unproductive, and Destructive," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(5), pages 893-921, October.
  5. Abhijit V. Banerjee & Andrew F. Newman, 1990. "Occupational Choice and the Process of Development," Discussion Papers 911, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  6. Weiss, Yoram, 1976. "The Wealth Effect in Occupational Choice," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 17(2), pages 292-307, June.
  7. Cole, Harold L & Mailath, George J & Postlewaite, Andrew, 1992. "Social Norms, Savings Behavior, and Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(6), pages 1092-1125, December.
  8. Becker, Gary S., 1971. "The Economics of Discrimination," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 2, number 9780226041162.
  9. Basu, Kaushik, 1989. "A Theory of Association: Social Status, Prices and Markets," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(4), pages 653-71, October.
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