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NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Andres Drenik

Department of Economics
Columbia University
420 West 118th Street
New York, NY 10027

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Institutional Affiliation: Columbia University

NBER Working Papers and Publications

August 2017Sympathy for the Diligent and the Demand for Workfare
with Ricardo Perez-Truglia: w23659
We study the role of fairness concerns in the demand for redistribution through workfare. In the first part of the paper, we present new evidence from a survey. We show that individuals are more generous towards poor people whom they perceive to be diligent workers relative to poor people whom they perceive to be non-diligent, a social preference that we label sympathy for the diligent. This preference is much stronger than preferences regarding other characteristics of the poor, such as race, nationality, and disability. More important, we show that subjects with higher sympathy for the diligent have a stronger preference for workfare programs. In the second part of the paper, we incorporate our empirical findings into a model of income redistribution. We consider the case of a benevolent...

Published: Drenik, Andres & Perez-Truglia, Ricardo, 2018. "Sympathy for the diligent and the demand for workfare," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 153(C), pages 77-102. citation courtesy of

 
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