Punctuality: A Cultural Trait as Equilibrium

20 Pages Posted: 28 Jun 2002

See all articles by Kaushik Basu

Kaushik Basu

Cornell University - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Brookings Institution

Jorgen W. Weibull

Stockholm School of Economics - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Date Written: June 10, 2002

Abstract

A people's culture, norms and habits are important determinants not just of the quality of social life but of economic progress and growth. In this paper we take the view that while the importance of culture is undeniable, the innateness of culture is not. We work here with a single example and demonstrate how a human trait which is widely believed to be cultural is at the same time a matter of choice. The example that we shall work with concerns punctuality. We show that punctuality may be simply an equilibrium response of individuals to what they expect others to do. The same society can get caught in a punctual equilibrium or a non-punctual equilibrium.

Keywords: Punctuality, coordination games, culture, norms

JEL Classification: Z10, C72, D29, O12

Suggested Citation

Basu, Kaushik and Weibull, Jorgen W., Punctuality: A Cultural Trait as Equilibrium (June 10, 2002). MIT Department of Economics Working Paper No. 02-26. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=317621 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.317621

Kaushik Basu (Contact Author)

Cornell University - Department of Economics ( email )

414 Uris Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853-7601
United States
607-255-2525 (Phone)
607-255-2818 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Brookings Institution ( email )

1775 Massachusetts Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States

Jorgen W. Weibull

Stockholm School of Economics - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 6501
Sveavagen 65
S-113 83 Stockholm
Sweden

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
2,241
Abstract Views
20,497
rank
6,547
PlumX Metrics