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Nov. 10, 2006

4:15-5:15pm
Little Theater, Quad 346, SJU

Jeffry Jacob

Values, Beliefs and Development

This session will present elements of a recent collaborative project which investigates the consequences of religion for economic development. In particular, we examine whether religious attitudes, beliefs, participation and preference contribute to differences in per capita income across countries. Using a large scale international survey on values and religious behavior, we estimate both cross-section and panel data models, controlling for the “deep determinants” of development: Institutions, geography and trade. Our results indicate that religion plays an important role in economic development, but mostly in a non-linear manner. Countries with moderate religious values and behavior tend to have higher income levels than countries on both ends of the religious spectrum.