Identity, Collective Beliefs, and the Allocation of Resources

20 Pages Posted: 18 Jun 2007  

Thomas D. Jeitschko

Michigan State University - Department of Economics

Seamus O'Connell

Maynooth College - Faculty of Theology

Rowena Pecchenino

NUI Maynooth - Department of Economics

Date Written: June 2007

Abstract

Humans are social creatures that interact in a number of different and at least partially independent social settings, such as work, home, social and political organizations, and church. In each setting one has an identity, or set of identities, which one is called upon to achieve. To obtain and maintain an identity one must dedicate scarce resources. The benefits of expending these resources may be, among other things, income, wealth, success, prestige, power, security, respect, social acceptance, spiritual fulfillment, and salvation. To better understand how the individual makes his resource allocation decisions given the many possible interactions, both positive and negative, across his identities, changes in collective beliefs defining identity, and the substitutability or complementarity of identities, we develop a simple behavioral model of an individual whose personal identity is an amalgam of two identities. We interpret the model in the context of an individual with a secular and a religious identity.

Keywords: Identity, Collective Beliefs

JEL Classification: Z13, Z12

Suggested Citation

Jeitschko, Thomas D. and O'Connell, Seamus and Pecchenino, Rowena, Identity, Collective Beliefs, and the Allocation of Resources (June 2007). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=993504 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.993504

Thomas D. Jeitschko

Michigan State University - Department of Economics ( email )

110 Marshall-Adams Hall
East Lansing, MI 48824
United States
517-355-8302 (Phone)
517-432-1068 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.msu.edu/~jeitschk/

Seamus O'Connell

Maynooth College - Faculty of Theology ( email )

2nd Floor
Iontas Building
Maynooth, County Kildare
Ireland

Rowena Pecchenino (Contact Author)

NUI Maynooth - Department of Economics ( email )

County Kildare
Ireland
35317083751 (Phone)
35317083934 (Fax)

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