Working Paper No. 478

A Note on Social Norms and Transfers

Published: May 1997Pages: 7Keywords: Sociology; Labour MarketJEL-codes: A14

A Note on Social Norms and Transfers David Sundén and Jörgen W. Weibull


This note elaborates an extension of the paper "Social Norms, the Welfare State, and Voting" by Lindbeck, Nyberg, and Weibull [1]. That paper studies the effects of a social norm against living off others work. In the welfare-state context of their model, this means that individuals who live on public transfers experience disutility. One limitation in the model is that the individual's choice is binary: either to work full time or not at all. Here we allow individuals to choose working hours on a continuous scale. We derive a fixed-point equation that determines all individuals number of work hours, and show that the limitation to a binary choice is not binding if individuals have Cobb-Douglas preferences and no non-labor incomes.

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