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Tastes, castes, and culture : the influence of society on preferences, Volume 1
Author:Fehr, Ernst; Hoff, Karla; Country:World;
Date Stored:2011/08/15Document Date:2011/08/01
Document Type:Policy Research Working PaperSubTopics:Biodiversity; Labor Policies; Economic Theory & Research; Cultural Policy; Gender and Social Development
Language:EnglishRegion:The World Region
Report Number:WPS5760Collection Title:Policy Research working paper ; no. WPS 5760
Volume No:1  

Summary: Economists have traditionally treated preferences as exogenously given. Preferences are assumed to be influenced by neither beliefs nor the constraints people face. As a consequence, changes in behaviour are explained exclusively in terms of changes in the set of feasible alternatives. Here the authors argue that the opposition to explaining behavioural changes in terms of preference changes is ill-founded, that the psychological properties of preferences render them susceptible to direct social influences, and that the impact of "society" on preferences is likely to have important economic and social consequences.

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