Munich Personal RePEc Archive

The evolutionary dynamics of tolerance

Correani, Luca and Di Dio, Fabio and Garofalo, Giuseppe (2009): The evolutionary dynamics of tolerance.

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Abstract

This paper incorporates the phenomenon of tolerance, as the ability to accept diversity, into an economic analysis showing how different aptitudes to trust and cooperation can affect economic outcomes. In the economic system we propose, tolerance is associated with the different weight that agents attribute to their own nature and to the institutional parameters in their utility function. We thus construct a model of overlapping generations, showing that the incentives that influence descendants’ predisposition to tolerance depend on both institutional factors, where behaviour is imposed by rules, and on social (or cultural) factors, found in popular customs and established traditions. Our study highlights the absolute impossibility of affirming tolerance through formal rules. In fact, intolerance is a persistent attitude and its control is only possible through constant and continuous interventions on the educational processes of new generations (intolerance trap).

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