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Bowling alone or bowling at all? The effect of unemployment on social participation

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  • Kunze, Lars
  • Suppa, Nicolai

Abstract

This article examines the impact of unemployment on social participation using German panel data. We find negative and lasting effects for public social activities but also a retreat of individuals into private life. Issues of selection and endogeneity are addressed by using plant closures as exogenous entries into unemployment. Social norms and labour market prospects are shown to be relevant for explaining these findings. Our results advance the understanding of the consequences of unemployment for human well-being, highlight an hitherto unexplored channel through which unemployment influences economic outcomes (via changes in social capital) and point to an alternative explanation of unemployment hysteresis based on access to information.

Suggested Citation

  • Kunze, Lars & Suppa, Nicolai, 2017. "Bowling alone or bowling at all? The effect of unemployment on social participation," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 133(C), pages 213-235.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:133:y:2017:i:c:p:213-235
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2016.11.012
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Unemployment; Social participation; Plant closure; Fixed effects; Well-being;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being

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