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Kinship, Incentives and Evolution – revised version: Kinship, Incentives, and Evolution

We analyze how family ties affect incentives, with focus on the strategic interaction between two mutually altruistic siblings. The siblings exert effort to produce output under uncertainty, and they may transfer output to each other. With equally altruistic siblings, their equilibrium effort is nonmonotonic in the common degree of altruism, and it depends on the harshness of the environment. We define a notion of local evolutionary stability of degrees of sibling altruism and show that this degree is lower than the kinship-relatedness factor. Numerical simulations show how family ties vary with the environment, and how this affects economic outcomes.

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Paper provided by Carleton University, Department of Economics in its series Carleton Economic Papers with number 07-13.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: 13 Nov 2007
Date of revision: 17 Sep 2010
Publication status: Published: Revised version: Kinship, Incentives, and Evolution, American Economic Review, Vol. 100, No. 4 (September 2010), pp. 1725–1758
Handle: RePEc:car:carecp:07-13
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  1. Eugene A. Hammel & Hans-Peter Kohler, 2001. "On the role of families and kinship networks in pre-industrial agricultural societies: An analysis of the 1698 Slavonian census," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 14(1), pages 21-49.
  2. Cox, Donald & Fafchamps, Marcel, 2008. "Extended Family and Kinship Networks: Economic Insights and Evolutionary Directions," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
  3. Assar Lindbeck & Sten Nyberg, 2006. "Raising Children to Work Hard: Altruism, Work Norms, and Social Insurance," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(4), pages 1473-1503.
  4. Bergstrom, Theodore C, 1995. "On the Evolution of Altruistic Ethical Rules for Siblings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 58-81, March.
  5. Ana Fernandes, 2011. "Altruism, labor supply and redistributive neutrality," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 24(4), pages 1443-1469, October.
  6. Fafchamps, Marcel & Lund, Susan, 2003. "Risk-sharing networks in rural Philippines," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 261-287, August.
  7. Neil Bruce & Michael Waldman, 1990. "The Rotten-Kid Theorem Meets the Samaritan's Dilemma," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(1), pages 155-165.
  8. Guido Tabellini, 2008. "The Scope of Cooperation: Values and Incentives," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(3), pages 905-950.
  9. Alger, Ingela & Weibull, Jörgen, 2007. "The Fetters of the Sib: Weber Meets Darwin," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 682, Stockholm School of Economics.
  10. Cox, Donald & Hansen, Bruce E. & Jimenez, Emmanuel, 2004. "How responsive are private transfers to income? Evidence from a laissez-faire economy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 2193-2219, August.
  11. Altonji, Joseph G & Hayashi, Fumio & Kotlikoff, Laurence J, 1997. "Parental Altruism and Inter Vivos Transfers: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(6), pages 1121-1166, December.
  12. Arnott, Richard & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1991. "Moral Hazard and Nonmarket Institutions: Dysfunctional Crowding Out or Peer Monitoring?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 179-190, March.
  13. Sethi, Rajiv & Somanathan, E., 2001. "Preference Evolution and Reciprocity," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 273-297, April.
  14. Alger, Ingela & Weibull, Jörgen, 2007. "Family ties, incentives and development: a model of coerced altruism," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 681, Stockholm School of Economics.
  15. repec:dau:papers:123456789/4571 is not listed on IDEAS
  16. Donald Cox & Emanuela Galasso & Emmauel Jiminez, 2006. "Private Transfers in a Cross Section of Developing Countries," Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College wp2006-1, Center for Retirement Research, revised Jan 2006.
  17. Marco Manacorda & Enrico Moretti, 2006. "Why do Most Italian Youths Live with Their Parents? Intergenerational Transfers and Household Structure," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(4), pages 800-829, 06.
  18. Maitra, Pushkar & Ray, Ranjan, 2003. "The effect of transfers on household expenditure patterns and poverty in South Africa," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 23-49, June.
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