Social Status in Economic Theory: A Review

32 Pages Posted: 9 Nov 2008

See all articles by Tom Truyts

Tom Truyts

KU Leuven - Faculty of Business and Economics (FEB); Facultés Universitaires Saint Louis à Bruxelles; Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) - Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE)

Date Written: August 1, 2008

Abstract

Social distinction or status is an important motivation of human behaviour. This paper provides a selective survey of recent advances in the economic analysis of the origins and consequences of social status. First, a selection of empirical research from a variety of scientific disciplines is discussed to underpin the further theoretical analysis. I then consider the origins and determinants of tastes for status, discuss the endogenous derivation of such a preferences for relative standing and assess the different formalisations these preferences. Subsequently, the consequences of preferences for status are studied for a variety of problems and settings. The last section discusses a number of implications of status concerns for normative economics and public policy.

Suggested Citation

Truyts, Tom, Social Status in Economic Theory: A Review (August 1, 2008). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1296630 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1296630

Tom Truyts (Contact Author)

KU Leuven - Faculty of Business and Economics (FEB) ( email )

Naamsestraat 69
Leuven, B-3000
Belgium

Facultés Universitaires Saint Louis à Bruxelles ( email )

Boulevard du Jardin Botanique 43
Bruxelles, 1000
Belgium

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

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