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Noblesse oblige? Determinants of survival in a life-and-death situation

  • Frey, Bruno S.
  • Savage, David A.
  • Torgler, Benno

This paper explores what determines the survival of people in a life-and-death situation. The sinking of the Titanic allows us to inquire whether pro-social behavior matters in such extreme situations. This event can be considered a quasi-natural experiment. The empirical results suggest that social norms such as 'women and children first' persevered during such an event. Women of reproductive age and crew members had a higher probability of survival. Passenger class, fitness, group size, and cultural background also mattered.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization.

Volume (Year): 74 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1-2 (May)
Pages: 1-11

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:74:y:2010:i:1-2:p:1-11
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jebo

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