How Laws Affect the Perception of Norms: Empirical Evidence from the Lockdown

28 Pages Posted: 1 Sep 2020

See all articles by Roberto Galbiati

Roberto Galbiati

Sciences Po

Emeric Henry

Sciences Po

Nicolas Jacquemet

Paris School of Economics (PSE); Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne

Max Lobeck

Paris School of Economics (PSE)

Date Written: September 1, 2020

Abstract

Laws not only affect behavior due to changes in material payoffs, but they may also change the perception individuals have of societal norms, either by shifting them directly or by providing information on these norms. Using detailed daily survey data and exploiting the introduction of lockdown measures in the UK in the context of the COVID-19 health crisis, we provide causal evidence that the law drastically changed the perception of the norms regarding social distancing behaviors. We show this effect of laws on perceived norms is mostly driven by an informational channel.

Keywords: laws, norms, expressive function, misperception, COVID-19

JEL Classification: K1, I12, I18

Suggested Citation

Galbiati, Roberto and Henry, Emeric and Jacquemet, Nicolas and Lobeck, Max, How Laws Affect the Perception of Norms: Empirical Evidence from the Lockdown (September 1, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3684710 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3684710

Roberto Galbiati

Sciences Po ( email )

27 rue Saint-Guillaume
Paris Cedex 07, 75337
France

Emeric Henry (Contact Author)

Sciences Po ( email )

27 rue Saint-Guillaume
Paris Cedex 07, 75337
France

Nicolas Jacquemet

Paris School of Economics (PSE) ( email )

48 Boulevard Jourdan
Paris, 75014 75014
France

Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne ( email )

17, rue de la Sorbonne
Paris, 75005
France

HOME PAGE: http://www.nicolasjacquemet.com/

Max Lobeck

Paris School of Economics (PSE) ( email )

48 Boulevard Jourdan
Paris, 75014 75014
France

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
102
Abstract Views
594
rank
309,050
PlumX Metrics