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Hard to Forget: Long-lasting E ffects of Social Capital Accumulation Shocks

  • Amodio, Francesco

    ()

    (Associazione Italiana per la Cultura della Cooperazione e del Non Profit)

Very few contributions have dealt with the analysis of specific determinants of social capital accumulation and destruction. Even if limited in scale, the analysis of precise historical events can help in discerning the dynamics of social capital and its persistence. The case of Italian unification is here considered. I focus on three historical episodes of conflict, which caused the death of a big fraction of population in three specific locations. When towns in the areas surrounding these locations are considered, I show how each kilometer further from the hit town is associated with a significant increase in the electoral turnout in European Parliament elections held in 1979-1999. I believe these differences to reflect differences in social capital endowments across towns. The pattern is confirmed when World War I casualties are used as a measure of social capital at the beginning of the XXth century. Results are robust to the inclusion of a number of controls and to several robustness checks.

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Paper provided by Associazione Italiana per la Cultura della Cooperazione e del Non Profit in its series AICCON Working Papers with number 105-2012.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: 20 Jun 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ris:aiccon:2012_105
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  1. Guido Tabellini, 2006. "Culture and institutions: economic development in the regions of Europe," Levine's Working Paper Archive 321307000000000241, David K. Levine.
  2. Luca Anderlini & Dino Gerardi & Roger Lagunoff, 2007. "Social Memory and Evidence from the Past," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1601, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  3. Alesina, Alberto F & Algan, Yann & Cahuc, Pierre & Giuliano, Paola, 2010. "Family Values and the Regulation of Labor," CEPR Discussion Papers 7688, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  5. Francesco Bianchi, 2012. "Regime Switches, Agents’ Beliefs, and Post-World War II U.S. Macroeconomic Dynamics," Working Papers 12-04, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  6. Durante, Ruben, 2009. "Risk, Cooperation and the Economic Origins of Social Trust: an Empirical Investigation," MPRA Paper 25887, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Bisin, Alberto & Verdier, Thierry, 2001. "The Economics of Cultural Transmission and the Dynamics of Preferences," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 298-319, April.
  8. Rafael Di Tella & Sebastian Galiani & Ernesto Schargrodsky, 2007. "The Formation of Beliefs: Evidence from the Allocation of Land Titles to Squatters," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(1), pages 209-241, 02.
  9. Alberto Alesina & Paola Giuliano, 2010. "The power of the family," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 93-125, June.
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