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The Evolution of Considerate Smoking Behavior

This paper studies the formation of social norms for considerate smoking behavior. Being considerate gives smokers a higher social approval from non-smokers, but imposes an inconvenience cost. A non-smoker's disapproval of inconsiderate smoking is assumed to be stronger the less used he is to being exposed to passive smoking. The analysis shows that introduction of a smoking regulation may move the society from an initial no-consideration Nash equilibrium to a Nash equilibrium in which every smoker is considerate, even in the unregulated zone. This crowding in of considerate behavior will prevail even after policy reversal. Empirical evidence confirms that a shift in social norms on considerate smoking has taken place in Norway after the smoking law amendments in 1988, and supports the plausibility of model assumptions.

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Paper provided by Research Department of Statistics Norway in its series Discussion Papers with number 279.

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Date of creation: Jul 2000
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Handle: RePEc:ssb:dispap:279
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  1. Lindbeck, Assar, 1997. "Incentives and Social Norms in Household Behavior," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 370-77, May.
  2. Borgers, Tilman & Sarin, Rajiv, 1997. "Learning Through Reinforcement and Replicator Dynamics," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 1-14, November.
  3. Elster, Jon, 1989. "Social Norms and Economic Theory," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 99-117, Fall.
  4. Gachter, Simon & Fehr, Ernst, 1999. "Collective action as a social exchange," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 341-369, July.
  5. Assar Lindbeck & Sten Nyberg & Jšrgen W. Weibull, 1999. "Social Norms And Economic Incentives In The Welfare State," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 1-35, February.
  6. Matthew C. Farrelly & William N. Evans & Edward Montgomery, 1999. "Do Workplace Smoking Bans Reduce Smoking?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(4), pages 728-747, September.
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