The Agricultural Origins of Time Preference
- (pp. 3064-3103)
AbstractThis research explores the origins of observed differences in time preference across countries and regions. Exploiting a natural experiment associated with the expansion of suitable crops for cultivation in the course of the Columbian Exchange, the research establishes that pre-industrial agro-climatic characteristics which were conducive to higher return to agricultural investment triggered selection, adaptation, and learning processes that generated a persistent positive effect on the prevalence of long-term orientation in the contemporary era. Furthermore, the research establishes that these agro-climatic characteristics have had a culturally embodied impact on economic behavior such as technological adoption, education, saving, and smoking.
CitationGalor, Oded, and Ömer Özak. 2016. "The Agricultural Origins of Time Preference." American Economic Review, 106 (10): 3064-3103. DOI: 10.1257/aer.20150020
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