Research

Estimating the Institutional and Network Effects of Religious Cultures on International Trade

As a social institution, religion directly influences economic behavior, including trade. Religious culture also impacts trade indirectly because it is part of a society's overall culture, which in turn influences many other formal and informal institutions that also directly influence economic activity. Finally, religious cultures support trade networks. Applying panel data for 84 countries for the years 1995–2000 to an augmented gravity model that distinguishes between the direct institutional, indirect institutional, and network effects of religious cultures, we find that only three of the world's eight major religious cultures directly stimulate international trade. However, the majority of the religious cultures seem to indirectly increase trade through their influence on societies' other institutions, and six of the eight major religions have network effects that increase trade.

Publication Information
Article Title: Estimating the Institutional and Network Effects of Religious Cultures on International Trade
Journal: Kyklos (2007)
60(2), 255-277
Author(s): van den Berg, Hendrik;  Lewer, Joshua J.
Researcher Information
    
van den Berg, Hendrik
van den Berg, Hendrik
Emeritus
Expertise:
  • Economic Development
  • Heterodox Economics
  • International Finance
  • Open-Economy Macroeconomics
Economics
HLH 523
P.O. Box 880489
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, NE 68588-0489, USA
Phone: (402) 472-2319
hvan-den-berg1@unl.edu