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Social Networks and Trade Liberalization

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  • Manish Pandey
  • John Whalley

Abstract

We discuss how social considerations can affect the desirability of trade liberalization in a conventional small open economy model. We consider a representative family in which there are location specific network effects from interactions with other family members, such as joint consumption, joint emotional support, and coinsurance. The benefits an individual receives from the network they participate in are nonlinearly related to the number of family members located in urban and rural areas. Family members choose whether to locate in urban or rural areas and average and marginal network benefits differ. With differential network effects in urban and rural areas, in a model with traded urban and rural goods, free trade will no longer be the best policy. We show this through a numerical example, and suggest that the conventional economists case for free trade may need to be more nuanced once social considerations of this type are taken into account.

Suggested Citation

  • Manish Pandey & John Whalley, 2004. "Social Networks and Trade Liberalization," NBER Working Papers 10769, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10769 Note: ITI
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Fafchamps, Marcel & Lund, Susan, 2003. "Risk-sharing networks in rural Philippines," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 261-287, August.
    2. Paul Winters & Alain de Janvry & Elisabeth Sadoulet, 2001. "Family and Community Networks in Mexico-U.S. Migration," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 36(1), pages 159-184.
    3. Carrington, William J & Detragiache, Enrica & Vishwanath, Tara, 1996. "Migration with Endogenous Moving Costs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(4), pages 909-930, September.
    4. Keshab Bhattarai & John Whalley, 2006. "The Division and Size of Gains from Liberalization in Service Networks," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(3), pages 348-361, August.
    5. Robert M. Townsend, 1995. "Consumption Insurance: An Evaluation of Risk-Bearing Systems in Low-Income Economies," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(3), pages 83-102, Summer.
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    Cited by:

    1. Arribas, Iván & Pérez, Francisco & Tortosa-Ausina, Emili, 2006. "Measuring International Economic Integration: Theory and Evidence of Globalization," MPRA Paper 16010, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2006.
    2. Don J. Webber & Michael Horswell, 2009. "Microeconomic foundations of geographical variations in labour productivity," Working Papers 0913, Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance, Bristol Business School, University of the West of England, Bristol.
    3. Arribas, Iván & Pérez, Francisco & Tortosa-Ausina, Emili, 2008. "On the Dynamics of Globalization," MPRA Paper 16007, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2008.
    4. Pérez, Francisco & Arribas, Iván & Tortosa-Ausina, Emili, 2009. "Openness and geographic neutrality: How do they contribute to international banking integration?," MPRA Paper 17211, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Arribas, Iván & Pérez, Francisco & Tortosa-Ausina, Emili, 2009. "Measuring Globalization of International Trade: Theory and Evidence," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 127-145, January.
    6. Janeba, Eckhard, 2007. "International trade and consumption network externalities," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 781-803, May.

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    JEL classification:

    • A1 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics

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