Abstract

https://ssrn.com/abstract=1105319
 
 

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Bilingualism and Communicative Benefits


Shlomo Weber


Southern Methodist University (SMU) - Department of Economics; New Economic School

Jean J. Gabszewicz


Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) - Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE)

Victor A. Ginsburgh


Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) - Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE); Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES)

February 1, 2008

FEEM Working Paper No. 17.2008

Abstract:     
We examine patterns of acquiring non-native languages in a model with two languages and two populations with heterogeneous learning skills, where every individual faces a binary choice of learning the foreign language or refraining from doing so. We show that both interior and corner linguistic equilibria can emerge in our framework, and that the fraction of learners of the foreign language is higher in the country with a higher gross cost adjusted communicative benefit. It turns out that this observation is consistent with the data on language proficiency in bilingual countries such as Belgium and Canada. We also point out that linguistic equilibria can exhibit insufficient learning which opens the door for government policies that are beneficial for both populations.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 17

Keywords: Communicative Benefits, Linguistic Equilibrium, Learning Costs

JEL Classification: C72, D83, O52, Z13


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Date posted: April 1, 2008  

Suggested Citation

Weber, Shlomo and Gabszewicz, Jean J. and Ginsburgh, Victor A., Bilingualism and Communicative Benefits (February 1, 2008). FEEM Working Paper No. 17.2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1105319 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1105319

Contact Information

Shlomo Weber (Contact Author)
Southern Methodist University (SMU) - Department of Economics ( email )
Dallas, TX 75275
United States
214-768-3577 (Phone)
214-768-1821 (Fax)
New Economic School ( email )
Moscow
Russia
+ 7-495-9569508 (Phone)
Jean J. Gabszewicz
Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) - Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE) ( email )
34 Voie du Roman Pays
B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, b-1348
Belgium
Victor A. Ginsburgh
Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) - Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE) ( email )
34 Voie du Roman Pays
1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, 1348
Belgium
+32 2 650 3846 (Phone)
+32 2 650 4012 (Fax)
Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES) ( email )
Ave. Franklin D Roosevelt, 50 - C.P. 114
Brussels, B-1050
Belgium
+32 2 650 3839/4 (Phone)
+32 2 650 3595 (Fax)
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