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

Listed author(s):
  • 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
Handle: RePEc:ris:aiccon:2012_105
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  1. 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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  7. Francesco Bianchi, 2013. "Regime Switches, Agents' Beliefs, and Post-World War II U.S. Macroeconomic Dynamics," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(2), pages 463-490.
  8. Durante, Ruben, 2009. "Risk, Cooperation and the Economic Origins of Social Trust: an Empirical Investigation," MPRA Paper 25887, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. 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.
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