Divine Innovation: Religion and Service Provision by Religious Organizations in India
This paper examines innovations to religious and non-religious service provision by religious organizations in India. We present a stylized Hotelling-style model in which two religious organizations position themselves at opposite locations to differentiate themselves on the religious spectrum in order to compete to attract adherents. Moreover, the model predicts that economic inequality can make both organizations increase their provision of non-religious services to retain adherents. In order to test our propositions, we present unique primary survey data on the economics of religion that we have collected from 2006-2008 on 568 Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Sikh and Jain religious organizations spread across seven Indian states. We use these data to provide qualitative and descriptive statistics from the survey that is consistent and provides initial support for our propositions. We show that these organizations have substantially increased their provision of religious and non-religious services, but that there are significant variations by religion. We also provide quantitative evidence based on econometric testing to highlight that Indian religious organizations are maximizing the differences in their ideology with respect to other organizations, and are also providing higher education and health services as economic inequality increases in India.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Steven N. Durlauf & Andros Kourtellos & Chih Ming Tan, 2012.
"Is God in the details? A reexamination of the role of religion in economic growth,"
Journal of Applied Econometrics,
John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(7), pages 1059-1075, November.
- Steven N. Durlauf & Andros Kourtellos & Chih Ming Tan, 2006. "Is God in the Details? A Reexamination of the Role of Religion in Economic Growth," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0613, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
- Steven N. Durlauf & Andros Kourtellos & Chih Ming Tan, 2010. "Is God in the Details? A Reexamination of the Role of Religion in Economic Growth," University of Cyprus Working Papers in Economics 11-2010, University of Cyprus Department of Economics.
- Iannaccone, Laurence R & Finke, Roger & Stark, Rodney, 1997. "Deregulating Religion: The Economics of Church and State," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 35(2), pages 350-364, April.
- Dehejia, Rajeev & DeLeire, Thomas & Luttmer, Erzo F.P., 2007. "Insuring consumption and happiness through religious organizations," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1-2), pages 259-279, February.
- Dehejia, Rajeev & DeLeire, Thomas & Luttmer, Erzo F. P., 2005. "Insuring Consumption and Happiness through Religious Organizations," Working Paper Series rwp05-047, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
- Rajeev Dehejia & Thomas DeLeire & Erzo F.P. Luttmer, 2005. "Insuring Consumption and Happiness Through Religious Organizations," NBER Working Papers 11576, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Stark, Rodney & Iannaccone, Laurence R & Finke, Roger, 1996. "Religion, Science, and Rationality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 433-437, May.
- Laurence R. Iannaccone, 1998. "Introduction to the Economics of Religion," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(3), pages 1465-1495, September. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)