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The social capital legacy of communism-results from the Berlin Wall experiment

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  • Boenisch, Peter
  • Schneider, Lutz

Abstract

In this paper we establish a direct link between the communist history, the resulting structure of social capital, and attitudes toward spatial mobility. We argue that the communist regime induced a specific social capital mix that discouraged geographic mobility even after its demise. Theoretically, we integrate two branches of the social capital literature into one more comprehensive framework distinguishing an open type and a closed type of social capital. Using the German Socio-Economic Panel (GSOEP) we take advantage of the natural experiment that separated Germany into two parts after the WWII to identify the causal effect of social capital on mobility. We estimate a three equation ordered probit model and provide strong empirical evidence for our theoretical propositions.

Suggested Citation

  • Boenisch, Peter & Schneider, Lutz, 2013. "The social capital legacy of communism-results from the Berlin Wall experiment," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 391-411.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:32:y:2013:i:c:p:391-411
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ejpoleco.2013.09.007
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    2. Helmut Rainer & Clara Albrecht & Stefan Bauernschuster & Anita Fichtl & Timo Hener & Joachim Ragnitz, 2018. "Deutschland 2017 - Studie zu den Einstellungen und Verhaltensweisen der Bürgerinnen und Bürger im vereinigten Deutschland," ifo Forschungsberichte, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, number 96.
    3. Štěpán Mikula & Mariola Pytliková, 2020. "Air Pollution & Migration: Exploiting a Natural Experiment from the Czech Republic," EconPol Working Paper 43, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
    4. Peter Huber & Stepan Mikula, 2019. "Social capital and willingness to migrate in post-communist countries," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 46(1), pages 31-59, February.
    5. Friehe, Tim & Müller, Helge & Neumeier, Florian, 2018. "The effect of Western TV on crime: Evidence from East Germany," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 346-372.
    6. Tim Friehe & Helge Mueller & Florian Neumeier, 2017. "Media content's role in the making of a democrat: Evidence from East Germany," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201711, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    7. Bergh, Andreas & Bjørnskov, Christian, 2014. "Trust, welfare states and income equality: Sorting out the causality," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 183-199.
    8. Peter Huber & Josef Montag, 2020. "Homeownership, Political Participation, and Social Capital in Post‐Communist Countries and Western Europe," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 73(1), pages 96-119, February.
    9. Ingrid-Mihaela Dragotă & Andreea Curmei-Semenescu & Raluca Moscu, 2020. "CEO Diversity, Political Influences, and CEO Turnover in Unstable Environments: The Romanian Case," Journal of Risk and Financial Management, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 13(3), pages 1-22, March.
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    12. Friehe, Tim & Müller, Helge & Neumeier, Florian, 2020. "Media’s role in the making of a democrat: Evidence from East Germany," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(4), pages 866-890.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Communism; Social capital; Mobility; Institutional transition;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • P36 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions - - - Consumer Economics; Health; Education and Training; Welfare, Income, Wealth, and Poverty
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population
    • C36 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Instrumental Variables (IV) Estimation

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