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Is The Hand Of God Involved In Human Cooperation?An Experimental Examination Of The Supernatural Punishment Theory

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    This paper examines the supernatural punishment theory. The theory postulates that religion increases cooperation because religious people fear the retributions that may follow if they do not follow the rules and norms provided by the religion. We report results for a public goods experiment conducted in India, Mexico, and Sweden. By asking participants whether they are religious or not, we study whether religiosity has an effect on voluntary cooperation in the public goods game. We found no significant behavioral differences between religious and nonreligious participants in the experiment.

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    File URL: http://www.vxu.se/ehv/filer/forskning/cafo/wps/wps_nek_1_08.pdf
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    Paper provided by Centre for Labour Market Policy Research (CAFO), School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University in its series CAFO Working Papers with number 2008:1.

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    Length: 24 pages
    Date of creation: 01 Feb 2008
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:hhs:vxcafo:2008_001
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Centre for Labour Market Policy Research (CAFO), School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University, SE 351 95 Växjö, Sweden
    Phone: +46 470 70 87 64
    Web page: http://lnu.se/research-groups/cafo?l=en

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    1. Guido Heineck, 2002. "Does Religion Influence the Labour Supply of Married Women in Germany?," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 278, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    2. Knack, Stephen & Keefer, Philip, 1997. "Does Social Capital Have an Economic Payoff? A Cross-Country Investigation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1251-88, November.
    3. Rachel M. McCleary & Robert J. Barro, 2006. "Religion and Economy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(2), pages 49-72, Spring.
    4. Alesina, Alberto & Baqir, Reza & Easterly, William, 1999. "Public goods and ethnic divisions," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2108, The World Bank.
    5. Luigi Guiso & Paola Sapienza & Luigi Zingales, 2000. "The Role of Social Capital in Financial Development," CRSP working papers 511, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
    6. Granger, Maury D. & Price, Gregory N., 2007. "The tree of science and original sin: Do christian religious beliefs constrain the supply of scientists?," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 144-160, February.
    7. Mookerjee, Rajen & Beron, Krista, 2005. "Gender, religion and happiness," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 674-685, October.
    8. Heath, W. C. & Waters, M. S. & Watson, J. K., 1995. "Religion and economic welfare: An empirical analysis of state per capita income," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 129-142, June.
    9. Videras, Julio, 2006. "Religion and animal welfare: Evidence from voting data," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 652-659, August.
    10. Brown, Sarah & Taylor, Karl, 2007. "Religion and education: Evidence from the National Child Development Study," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 439-460, July.
    11. Lipford, Jody & McCormick, Robert E. & Tollison, Robert D., 1993. "Preaching matters," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 235-250, August.
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    13. Guiso, Luigi & Sapienza, Paola & Zingales, Luigi, 2003. "People's opium? Religion and economic attitudes," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 225-282, January.
    14. Hull, Brooks B. & Bold, Frederick, 1995. "Preaching matters: Replication and extension," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 143-149, June.
    15. Laurence R. Iannaccone, 1998. "Introduction to the Economics of Religion," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(3), pages 1465-1495, September.
    16. Tan, Jonathan H.W., 2006. "Religion and social preferences: An experimental study," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 90(1), pages 60-67, January.
    17. Crain, W Mark & Lee, Katherine J, 1999. "Economic Growth Regressions for the American States: A Sensitivity Analysis," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 37(2), pages 242-57, April.
    18. Clive Beed, 2006. "What is the relationship of religion to economics?," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 64(1), pages 21-45.
    19. La Porta, Rafael, et al, 1997. "Trust in Large Organizations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 333-38, May.
    20. Catherine C. Eckel & Philip J. Grossman, 2004. "Giving to Secular Causes by the Religious and Nonreligious: An Experimental Test of the Responsiveness of Giving to Subsidies," Monash Economics Working Papers archive-07, Monash University, Department of Economics.
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