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Are we addicted to love? A parsimonious economic model of love

Gigi Foster, Mark Pingle and Jingjing Yang

Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2019, vol. 165, issue C, 70-81

Abstract: It is apparent that love influences people's choices, yet little work in economics has focused on how love develops or why it matters for resource allocation decisions. Here, we present a simple dynamic model of how love develops and evolves, recognizing our parsimonious model will not capture all the nuances associated with such a complex topic. Nonetheless, our love dynamic, motivated by a few intuitive assumptions, can explain many observed facts, like why stable love relationships can develop but also why blossoming relationships can unexpectedly take a turn and ultimately dissolve. We embed our love dynamic in an intertemporal optimization problem and derive the optimal path for effort put toward a love relationship when it can also produce material consumption. The optimal path offers an explanation for why “taking the other for granted” may be rational.

Keywords: Love; Intertemporal choice; Effort; Well-being; Behavioral (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D1 D9 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:165:y:2019:i:c:p:70-81

DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2019.07.009

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Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization is currently edited by Houser, D. and Puzzello, D.

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