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The persistent effects of novelty-seeking traits on comparative economic development

Listed author(s):
  • Gören, Erkan
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    The issue of novelty-seeking traits have been related to important economic attitudes such as risk-taking, entrepreneurial, and explorative behaviors that foster technological progress and, thus, economic development. However, numerous molecular genetic studies have shown that novelty-seeking bearing individuals are prone to certain psychological “disadvantages” such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), leading to occupational and educational difficulties in modern societies. Using a recent compilation of DRD4 exon III allele frequencies – a particular gene variant that population geneticists have found to be sometimes associated with the human phenotype of novelty-seeking behavior – this paper advances a new country-level measure on the prevalence of novelty-seeking traits for a large number of countries worldwide. The results suggest a stable non-monotonic inverted U-shaped relationship between the country-level DRD4 exon III allele frequency measure and economic development. This finding is suggestive of the potential “benefits” and “costs” of novelty-seeking traits for the aggregate economy.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304387816301171
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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Development Economics.

    Volume (Year): 126 (2017)
    Issue (Month): C ()
    Pages: 112-126

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:126:y:2017:i:c:p:112-126
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jdeveco.2016.12.009
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/devec

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