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  • 1
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    Bonn: University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF)
    Publication Date: 2018-06-27
    Description: We study a policy response to an increase in post-merger social stress. If a merger of groups of people is viewed as a revision of their social space, then the merger alters people's comparators and increases social stress: the social stress of a merged population is greater than the sum of the levels of social stress of the constituent populations when apart. We use social stress as a proxy measure for looming social protest. As a response to the post-merger increase in social stress, we consider a policy aimed at reversing the negative effect of the merger by bringing the social stress of the merged population back to the sum of the pre-merger levels of social stress of the constituent populations when apart. We present, in the form of an algorithm, a cost-effective policy response which is publicly financed and does not reduce the incomes of the members of the merged population. We then compare the financial cost of implementing such a policy when the merger involves more or fewer groups. We show that the cost may fall as the number of merging groups rises.
    Keywords: D04 ; D63 ; F55 ; H53 ; P51 ; ddc:330 ; merger of populations ; revision of social space ; aggregate relative deprivation ; social stress ; a cost-effective policy response
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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  • 2
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    Bonn: University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF)
    Publication Date: 2018-06-27
    Description: Recent research shows that the merger of economies increases aggregate stress. This paper shows that there is no income distribution policy which will ensure that the wellbeing of the individuals belonging to merging economies does not fall below their pre-merger level.
    Keywords: D04 ; D63 ; F55 ; H53 ; P51 ; ddc:330 ; merger of populations ; revision of social space ; aggregate relative deprivation ; Societal stress ; policy response
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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  • 3
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    Bonn: University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF)
    Publication Date: 2018-06-27
    Description: We demonstrate that a rank-preserving transfer from a richer individual to a poorer individual can exacerbate income inequality (when inequality is measured by the Gini coefficient). This happens when individuals' preferences depend negatively not only on work time (effort) but also on low relative income. It is rigorously shown that the set of preference profiles that gives rise to this perverse effect of a transfer on inequality is a non-empty open subset of all preference profiles. A robust example illustrates this result.
    Keywords: D30 ; D31 ; D63 ; ddc:330 ; a rank-preserving inequality-narrowing transfer ; the Gini coefficient ; low relative income ; relative deprivation ; exacerbated inequality
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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  • 4
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    Bonn: Zentrum für Entwicklungsforschung (ZEF)
    Publication Date: 2018-07-10
    Description: We introduce a new class of generalized measures of relative deprivation. The class takes the form of a power mean of order p . A characteristic of the class is that depending on the value of the proximity-sensitive parameter p , the class is capable of accommodating both a decreasing weight (the case of p 〉 1), and an increasing weight (the case of p (0,1) ) accorded to given changes in the incomes of the individuals who are wealthier than the reference individual, depending on their proximity in the income distribution to the reference individual.
    Keywords: D31 ; D33 ; D63 ; H23 ; ddc:330 ; Income distribution ; Relative deprivation ; Sensitivity to income transfers between wealthier individuals ; Sensitivity to the proximity of changes in others' incomes
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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  • 5
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    Bonn: University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF)
    Publication Date: 2018-06-27
    Description: In determining the optimal redistribution of a given population's income, we ask which factor is more important: the social planner's aversion to inequality, embedded in an isoelastic social welfare function indexed by a parameter alpha, or the individuals' concern at having a low relative income, indexed by a parameter beta in a utility function that is a convex combination of (absolute) income and low relative income. Assuming that the redistribution comes at a cost (because only a fraction of a taxed income can be transferred), we find that there exists a critical level of beta below which different isoelastic social planners choose different optimal allocations of incomes. However, if beta is above that critical level, all isoelastic social planners choose the same allocation of incomes because they then find that an equal distribution of incomes maximizes social welfare regardless of the magnitude of alpha.
    Keywords: D31 ; D60 ; D63 ; H21 ; I38 ; ddc:330 ; Maximization of social welfare ; Isoelastic social welfare functions ; Deadweight loss of tax and transfer ; Concern at having a low relative income ; Social planners' aversion to inequality
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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  • 6
    Publication Date: 2018-07-10
    Description: A transfer from a richer individual to poorer A transfer from a richer individual to poorer seems to be the most seems to be the most intuitive and straightforward way of reducing income inequality in a society. However, can such a transfer reduce the welfare of the society? We show that a rich rich-to -poor transfer can induce a response in the individuals' behaviors which actually exacerbates , rather than reduces, income inequality as measured by the Gini index. We use this result as an input in assessing the social welfare consequence of the transfer. Measuring social welfare by Sen's social welfare function, we show that the transfer reduces social welfare. These two results are possible even for individuals whose utility functions are relatively simple (namely, at most quadratic in all terms) and incorporate a distaste for low relative income. We first present the two results for a population of two individuals. We subsequently provide several generalizations. We show that our argument holds for a population of any size, and that that the choice of utility functions which trigger this response is not singular - the results obtain for an open set of the space of admissible utility functions. In addition, we show that a rich-to-poor transfer can exacerbate inequality when we employ Lorenz-domination, and that it can decrease social welfare when we draw on any increasing, Schur increasing, Schurincreasing, Schurincreasing, Schur increasing, Schurincreasing, Schur increasing, Schurincreasing, Schur-concave welfare function.
    Keywords: D30 ; D31 ; D60 ; D63 ; H21 ; I38 ; ddc:330 ; A rich rich-to-poor transfer ; Relative income ; Sen's social welfare function
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
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  • 7
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    Bonn: University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF)
    Publication Date: 2018-06-27
    Description: This paper looks at the integration of regions and nations through the prism of the merger of populations (societies). The paper employs a particular index of social stress. Stylized examples of the merging of two populations suggest that with integration, the social stress index will increase. The examples form the basis for the development of new formulas for calculating the social stress of an integrated population as a function of the levels of social stress of the constituent populations when apart. The formulas reveal that the social stress of an integrated population is higher than the sum of the levels of social stress of the constituent populations when apart. This raises the distinct possibility that the merging of populations may be a social liability: integration may fail to give the populace a sense of improved wellbeing.
    Keywords: D02 ; D63 ; F55 ; P51 ; ddc:330 ; Integration of regions and nations ; Merging populations ; Social welfare
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
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  • 8
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    Bonn: University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF)
    Publication Date: 2018-06-27
    Description: I study the integration of regions in the form of a merger of populations, which I interpret as a revision of people's social space and their comparison set; I illustrate the way in which a merger can aggravate social distress; and I consider policy responses. Specifically, I view the merger of populations as a merger of income vectors; I measure social distress by aggregate relative deprivation; I demonstrate that a merger increases aggregate relative deprivation; and I show that a social planner is able to reverse this increase by means of least-cost, post-merger increases in individual incomes, but is unable to counter it by relying exclusively on a self-contained income redistribution that retains individual levels of wellbeing at their pre-merger levels.
    Keywords: D04 ; D63 ; F55 ; H53 ; P51 ; ddc:330 ; Integration of regions ; Merger of populations ; Revision of social space ; Aggregate relative deprivation ; Social distress ; Policy responses ; Politische Integration ; Bevölkerung ; Soziale Integration ; Einkommensverteilung ; Sozialer Konflikt ; Konsuminterdependenz ; Einkommenspolitik ; Theorie
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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  • 9
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    Bonn: University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF)
    Publication Date: 2018-06-27
    Description: This paper considers the integration of economies as a merger of populations. The premise is that the merger of groups of people alters their social landscape and their comparators. The paper identifies the effect of the merger on aggregate distress. A merger is shown to increase aggregate distress, measured as total relative deprivation: the social distress of a merged population is greater than the sum of the social distress of the constituent populations when apart. Physiological evidence from neighboring disciplines points to an increase in societal stress upon merger.
    Keywords: D04 ; D63 ; F55 ; H53 ; P51 ; ddc:330 ; Merger of populations ; Revision of social space ; Aggregate relative deprivation ; Societal distress
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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  • 10
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    Bonn: University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF)
    Publication Date: 2018-06-27
    Description: Let a society's unhappiness be measured by the aggregate of the levels of relative deprivation of its members. When two societies of equal size, F and M, merge, unhappiness in the merged society is shown to be higher than the sum of the levels of unhappiness in the constituent societies when apart; merger alone increases unhappiness. But when societies F and M merge and marriages are formed such that the number of households in the merged society is equal to the number of individuals in one of the constituent societies, unhappiness in the merged society is shown to be lower than the aggregate unhappiness in the two constituent societies when apart. This result obtains regardless of which individuals from one society form households with which individuals from the other, and even when the marriages have not (or not yet) led to income gains to the married couples from increased efficiency, scale economies, and the like. While there are various psychological reasons for people to become happier when they get married as opposed to staying single, the very formation of households reduces social distress even before any other happiness-generating factors kick in.
    Keywords: D0 ; D10 ; D31 ; D63 ; ddc:330 ; Merger of populations ; Integration of societies ; Unhappiness ; Marriages ; Relative deprivation ; Zufriedenheit ; Bevölkerung ; Soziale Integration ; Ehe ; Soziales Verhalten ; Vergleich ; Theorie
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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