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Raising Children To Work Hard: Altruism, Work Norms And Social Insurance

  • Lindbeck, Assar

    ()

    (Institute for International Economic Studies, Stockholm University)

  • Nyberg, Sten

    ()

    (Department of Economics, Stockholm University)

Children who can count on support from altruistic parents may not try hard to succeed in the labor market. Moreover, parental altruism makes withdrawal of such support non-credible. To promote work effort, parents may want to instill norms which later cause their children to experience guilt or shame associated with failure to support themselves. While social insurance pools risk across families, we show that it also creates a free-rider problem among parents in terms of norm formation. We also examine the formation of norms requiring children to support their parents financially in old age.

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Paper provided by Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies in its series Seminar Papers with number 691.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: 02 May 2001
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:iiessp:0691
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  1. Lindbeck, Assar & Weibull, Jorgen W, 1988. "Altruism and Time Consistency: The Economics of Fait Accompli," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(6), pages 1165-82, December.
  2. Becker, Gary S, 1993. "Nobel Lecture: The Economic Way of Looking at Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 385-409, June.
  3. Stutzer, Alois & Lalive, Rafael, 2001. "The Role of Social Work Norms in Job Searching and Subjective Well-Being," IZA Discussion Papers 300, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. H. Cremer & P. Pestieau, 1998. "Delaying Inter Vivos Transmissions Under Asymmetric Information," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 65(2), pages 322-330, October.
  5. Bernheim, B Douglas & Shleifer, Andrei & Summers, Lawrence H, 1985. "The Strategic Bequest Motive," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(6), pages 1045-76, December.
  6. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "A Theory of Social Interactions," NBER Working Papers 0042, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Lindbeck, Assar, 1995. " Welfare State Disincentives with Endogenous Habits and Norms," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 97(4), pages 477-94, December.
  8. Bergstrom, Theodore C, 1989. "A Fresh Look at the Rotten Kid Theorem--and Other Household Mysteries," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(5), pages 1138-59, October.
  9. 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.
  10. Vega-Redondo Fernando, 1993. "Competition and Culture in an Evolutionary Process of Equilibrium Selection: A Simple Example," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 618-631, October.
  11. Binmore, K. & Samuelson, L., 1993. "An Economist's Perspective on the Evolution of Norms," Working papers 9323, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  12. Hauk, Esther & Sáez-Martí, María, 2001. "On the Cultural Transmission of Corruption," Working Paper Series 564, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  13. Cremer, Helmuth & Pestieau, Pierre, 1996. "Bequests as a Heir "Discipline Device."," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 9(4), pages 405-14, November.
  14. Michihiro Kandori, 1992. "Social Norms and Community Enforcement," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 59(1), pages 63-80.
  15. Wilhelm, M.O., 1990. "Bequest Behavior And The Effect Of Heirs' Earnings: Testing The Altruistic Model Of Bequests," Papers 9-90-12, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
  16. Assar Lindbeck & Sten Nyberg & Jörgen W. Weibull, 1999. "Social Norms and Economic Incentives in the Welfare State," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 1-35.
  17. Lindbeck, Assar & Weibull, Jorgen W, 1986. " Intergenerational Aspects of Public Transfers, Borrowing and Debt," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 88(1), pages 239-67.
  18. Bisin, A. & Verdier, T., 1997. "On the Cultural Transmission of Preferences for Social Status," DELTA Working Papers 97-04, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
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