DP6950 On the Nature, Modeling, and Neural Bases of Social Ties
|Author(s):||Richard Ridderinkhof, Mirre Stallen, Frans A.A.M. van Winden|
|Publication Date:||August 2008|
|Keyword(s):||Affect, Modeling, Neuroeconomics, Social Ties|
|JEL(s):||D01, D64, D87, H41, I10|
|Programme Areas:||Industrial Organization|
|Link to this Page:||cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=6950|
This paper addresses the nature, formalization, and neural bases of (affective) social ties and discusses the relevance of ties for health economics. A social tie is defined as an affective weight attached by an individual to the well-being of another individual (?utility interdependence?). Ties can be positive or negative, and symmetric or asymmetric between individuals. Characteristic of a social tie, as conceived of here, is that it develops over time under the influence of interaction, in contrast with a trait like altruism. Moreover, a tie is not related to strategic behavior such as reputation formation but seen as generated by affective responses. A formalization is presented together with some supportive evidence from behavioral experiments. This is followed by a discussion of related psychological constructs and the presentation of suggestive neural findings, based on the existing literature. We conclude with some suggestions for future research.