Social Identity and Preferences

41 Pages Posted: 25 Apr 2008

See all articles by Daniel J. Benjamin

Daniel J. Benjamin

USC, Center for Economic and Social Research (CESR); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

James J. Choi

Yale School of Management; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

A. Strickland

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: April 2008

Abstract

We provide evidence that time and risk preference norms tied to social identities help shape observed U.S. demographic patterns in economic outcomes. We identify the marginal effect of norms by measuring how laboratory subjects' choices change when an aspect of social identity is made salient. We find that when ethnic identity is salient to Asian-American subjects, they make more patient choices. When we make race salient to black subjects, non-immigrant blacks (but not immigrant blacks) make more risk-averse choices. Making gender identity salient causes choices to conform to gender norms the subject believes are relatively more common.

Keywords: race, ethnicity, gender, identity, norm, stereotype, risk aversion, time preference

JEL Classification: C19, J15, J16, Z10

Suggested Citation

Benjamin, Daniel J. and Choi, James J. and Strickland, A., Social Identity and Preferences (April 2008). Yale ICF Working Paper No. 08-13. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1124994

Daniel J. Benjamin (Contact Author)

USC, Center for Economic and Social Research (CESR) ( email )

635 Downey Way
Los Angeles, CA 90089-3332
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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
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James J. Choi

Yale School of Management ( email )

135 Prospect Street
P.O. Box 208200
New Haven, CT 06520-8200
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

A. Strickland

affiliation not provided to SSRN

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