Repeated Shocks and Preferences for Redistribution

41 Pages Posted: 29 Jul 2019

See all articles by Giovanni Gualtieri

Giovanni Gualtieri

Italian National Research Council (CNR)

Marcella Nicolini

University of Pavia - Department of Economics and Management

Fabio Sabatini

University of Rome I

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: July 2019

Abstract

A society that believes wealth to be determined by random "luck", rather than by merit, demands more redistribution. We present evidence of this behavior by exploiting a natural experiment provided by the L'Aquila earthquake in 2009, which hit a large area of Central Italy through a series of destructive shakes over eight days. Matching detailed information on the ground acceleration registered during each shock with survey data about individual opinions on redistribution we show that the average intensity of the shakes is associated with subsequent stronger beliefs that, for a society to be fair, income inequalities should be levelled by redistribution. The shocks, however, are not all alike. We find that only the last three shakes - occurred on the fourth and the eighth day of the earthquake - have a statistically significant impact. Overall, we find that the timing and repetition of the shocks play a role in informing redistributive preferences.

Keywords: redistribution, inequality, natural disasters, earthquakes, multiple shocks

JEL Classification: H10, H53, D63, D69, Z1

Suggested Citation

Gualtieri, Giovanni and Nicolini, Marcella and Sabatini, Fabio, Repeated Shocks and Preferences for Redistribution (July 2019). IZA Discussion Paper No. 12475. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3427613

Giovanni Gualtieri (Contact Author)

Italian National Research Council (CNR) ( email )

Via San Martino della battaglia, 44
Roma, 00185
Italy

Marcella Nicolini

University of Pavia - Department of Economics and Management ( email )

Strada Nuova, 65
Pavia, 27100
Italy

Fabio Sabatini

University of Rome I ( email )

Piazzale Aldo Moro, 5
Rome, 00185
Italy

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