Tore Ellingsen


Title: A Model of Social Duties

Abstract: We develop and test a model of social duties. The model distinguishes unconditional duties to take or avoid certain actions from conditional duties that depend on the actions' payoffs. It also distinguishes strict duties (must do) from liberal duties (ought to do).  The internal blame associated with duty violation depends on the duty's strictness and is proportional to the externalities the violation causes. An individual's dutifulness determines how she trades off blame against material gains.  The model rationalizes behaviors that are incompatible with consequentialist preferences. Tests involve both appropriateness ratings and behavior-based parameter estimation.