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Still different after all these years: Solidarity behavior in East and West Germany

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  • Brosig-Koch, Jeannette
  • Helbach, Christoph
  • Ockenfels, Axel
  • Weimann, Joachim

Abstract

Using data from laboratory experiments, we find that East Germans show consistently less solidarity than West Germans; there has been no convergence in the 20years after the reunification. While it has recently been estimated that political values converge 20 to 40years after the reunification (Alesina and Fuchs-Schündeln, 2007), we conclude from our findings that social behavior changes more slowly than political values. We hypothesize that this is due to complementarities involved in individual social behavior and the necessity to coordinate on social norms on the society level.

Suggested Citation

  • Brosig-Koch, Jeannette & Helbach, Christoph & Ockenfels, Axel & Weimann, Joachim, 2011. "Still different after all these years: Solidarity behavior in East and West Germany," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(11), pages 1373-1376.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:95:y:2011:i:11:p:1373-1376
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2011.06.002
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Experimental economics; Solidarity; Norms; Cross-culture study;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • P51 - Economic Systems - - Comparative Economic Systems - - - Comparative Analysis of Economic Systems

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