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The Economics of the Sabbath

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  • Pichler, Eva
  • Walther, Herbert

Abstract

Uur paper is inspired by the observation that - contrary to the US-experience - in many European countries working time schedules for different groups of workers are strictly regulated for the purpose of protecting "common leisure time" (like holidays sundays, recreation periods during the night and so on...). As a first step towards a more general analysis, a simple model analyzing the pattern of working time and leisure for two types of workers is developed. The basic assumptions are: productivity in general differs between periods where both are at work simultaneously ("common working time") and periods where only one is at work "private working time"). Moreover, utility of "common" (= overlapping) leisure time differs from utility of "private" leisure. The findings show that from a welfare point of view people work too long and get a shortage of common leisure whenever productivity during common working time is lower than outside common working time for any single individual. If the reverse holds, workers will end up with too short a working day and a lack of private leisure. The long-run development of the productivity gap is given a tentative historical interpretation.

Suggested Citation

  • Pichler, Eva & Walther, Herbert, 1992. "The Economics of the Sabbath," Department of Economics Working Paper Series 11, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.
  • Handle: RePEc:wiw:wus005:6285
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    File URL: https://epub.wu.ac.at/6285/
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    1. Nash, John, 1953. "Two-Person Cooperative Games," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 21(1), pages 128-140, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gerlinde Fellner & Matthias Sutter, 2009. "Causes, Consequences, and Cures of Myopic Loss Aversion – An Experimental Investigation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(537), pages 900-916, April.
    2. Engelbert Stockhammer & Paul Ramskogler, 2008. "Uncertainty and Exploitation in History," Journal of Economic Issues, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(1), pages 175-194, March.
    3. Badinger, Harald & Kubin, Ingrid, 2007. "Vom kurzfristigen zum mittelfristigen Gleichgewicht in einer offenen Volkswirtschaft unter fixen und flexiblen Wechselkursen," Department of Economics Working Paper Series 101, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.
    4. Pasquale Commendatore & Ingrid Kubin & Carmelo Petraglia, 2009. "Footloose Capital and Productive Public Services," Chapters, in: Neri Salvadori & Pasquale Commendatore & Massimo Tamberi (ed.), Geography, Structural Change and Economic Development, chapter 1, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    5. Klausinger, Hansjörg, 1993. "Die Klassische Ökonomie und die Keynessche Alternative. Revision eines Mythos?," Department of Economics Working Paper Series 25, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.
    6. Riedl, Aleksandra & Rocha-Akis, Silvia, 2007. "Testing the tax competition theory: How elastic are national tax bases in western Europe?," Department of Economics Working Paper Series 112, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.
    7. Stiassny, Alfred, 1993. "TVP - Ein Programm zur Schätzung von Modellen mit zeitvariierenden Parametern," Department of Economics Working Paper Series 22, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.
    8. Grandner, Thomas, 1994. "Gerwerkschaften in einem Cournot-Duopol. Sequentielle vs. simultane Lohnverhandlungen," Department of Economics Working Paper Series 26, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.
    9. Steidl, Annemarie & Stockhammer, Engelbert, 2007. "Coming and leaving. Internal mobility in late Imperial Austria," Department of Economics Working Paper Series 107, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.
    10. Özlem Onaran, 2007. "International financial markets and fragility in the Eastern Europe: "can it happen" here?," Department of Economics Working Papers wuwp108, Vienna University of Economics and Business, Department of Economics.
    11. Gstach, Dieter, 1994. "Data Envelopment Analysis in a Stochastic Setting: The right answer from the wrong model?," Department of Economics Working Paper Series 29, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.

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