Handbook of the Economics of Giving, Altruism and Reciprocity


Edited by

  • Serge-Christophe Kolm, Institute for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences, Paris, France
  • Jean Mercier Ythier, University of Paris La Sorbonne, Paris, France

The Handbook on the Economics of Giving, Reciprocity and Altruism provides a comprehensive set of reviews of literature on the economics of nonmarket voluntary transfers. The foundations of the field are reviewed first, with a sequence of chapters that present the hard core of the theoretical and empirical analyses of giving, reciprocity and altruism in economics, examining their relations with the viewpoints of moral philosophy, psychology, sociobiology, sociology and economic anthropology. Secondly, a comprehensive set of applications are considered of all the aspects of society where nonmarket voluntary transfers are significant: family and intergenerational transfers; charity and charitable institutions; the nonprofit economy; interpersonal relations in the workplace; the Welfare State; and international aid.
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Economists: professional researchers, advanced graduate students


Book information

  • Published: July 2006
  • Imprint: NORTH-HOLLAND
  • ISBN: 978-0-444-50697-9

Table of Contents

Volume 1.
1. Introduction to the economics of altruism, giving and reciprocity (S-C. Kolm).
Part I: Foundations.
I-A: Social view.

2. The empirical analysis of transfer motives (E. Schokkaert).
3. Altruistic behavior and altruistic motivations (J. Elster).
4. The gift and reciprocity: Perspectives from economic anthropology (C. Hann).
I-B: Overall views.
5. The economic theory of gift-giving: perfect substitutability of transfers and redistribution of wealth (J. Mercier Ythier).
6. Reciprocity: Its scope, rationales and consequences (S-C. Kolm ).
I-C: Experimental social psychology.
7. The formation of social preferences: Some lessons from Psychology and Biology (L. Levy-Garboua, C. Meidinger, B. Rapoport).
8. The economics of fairness, Reciprocity and altruism: Experimental evidence (E. Fehr, K.M. Schmidt). I-D: Human nature.
9. The economics of human relationships (P-L. Sacco, P. Vanin, S. Zamagni).
10. Human nature and sociality in economics (N. Bardsley, R. Sugden).
I-E: Special topics.
11. Natural kantian or zoo economicus? evolutionary theories of selfishness and altruism among men and beasts (T.C. Bergstrom).
12. Solidarity norms and institutions in village societies: Static and dynamic considerations (J-P. Platteau).