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Liberty, Religiosity, and Effort

Listed author(s):
  • Esteban, Joan Maria
  • Levy, Gilat
  • Mayoral, Laura

In this paper we study the role of religiosity and individual liberties in influencing the choice of labor effort. To a standard model with consumption and effort, we add a third (public) good: civil liberties with a cap established by law. We assume that the higher the degree of religiosity of an individual the less he likes liberties, such as divorce, abortion, gender parity, or gay marriage. With standard assumptions on individual preferences, our model implies that individual labor supply is decreasing in the level of personal religiosity and that this negative relationship is enhanced by the width of liberties. We show empirically that this holds and that the size of the effect is large. Specifically, we construct an index of civil liberties and find solid evidence in support of the joint effect of religiosity and liberties on labor effort.

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File URL: http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=10841
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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 10841.

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Date of creation: Sep 2015
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:10841
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  1. Maryam Dilmaghani, 2012. "Religiosity, human capital return and earnings in Canada," International Journal of Social Economics, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 39(1/2), pages 55-80, February.
  2. Mark Koyama & Jean-Paul Carvalho, "undated". "Development and Religious Polarization: The Emergence of Reform and Ultra-Orthodox Judaism," Discussion Papers 11/11, Department of Economics, University of York.
  3. Eli Berman, 2000. "Sect, Subsidy, and Sacrifice: An Economist's View of Ultra-Orthodox Jews," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(3), pages 905-953.
  4. Filipe Campante & David Yanagizawa-Drott, 2013. "Does Religion Affect Economic Growth and Happiness? Evidence from Ramadan," CID Working Papers 274, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
  5. Iannaccone, Laurence R, 1992. "Sacrifice and Stigma: Reducing Free-Riding in Cults, Communes, and Other Collectives," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(2), pages 271-291, April.
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