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Endogenous Norm Formation over the Life Cycle. The case of tax evasion

  • Nordblom, Katarina

    ()

    (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)

  • Zamac, Jovan

    ()

    (Dept of Economics, Uppsala University)

This paper offers an explanation to why the general observation that elderly hold stronger moral attitudes than young ones may be an age rather than a cohort effect. We apply mechanisms from social psychology to explain how personal norms may evolve over the life cycle. We assume that people update their norms influenced by their own past behavior (e.g., cognitive dissonance) and/or by the attitudes of their peers (normative conformity). We apply the theory on actual norm distributions for young and old concerning tax evasion. Allowing for heterogeneous updating of norms where only those who identify with their network are actually conforming with it, while the others are only influenced by their own past behavior, we can explain the difference between young and old people’s moral values as an age effect through endogenous norm formation.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2077/26143
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Paper provided by University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 511.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: 01 Jul 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published as Nordblom, Katarina and Jovan Zamac, 'Endogenous Norm Formation over the Life Cycle. The case of tax evasion' in Economic Analysis and Policy , 2012, pages 153-170.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0511
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, Box 640, SE 405 30 GÖTEBORG, Sweden

Phone: 031-773 10 00
Web page: http://www.handels.gu.se/econ/

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