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Asocial Capital: Civic Culture and Social Distancing during COVID-19

Ruben Durante, Luigi Guiso and Giorgio Gulino

No 1181, Working Papers from Barcelona School of Economics

Abstract: Social distancing can slow the spread of COVID-19 if citizens comply with it and internalize the cost of their mobility on others. We study how civic values mediate this process using data on mobility across Italian provinces between January and May 2020. We find robust evidence that after the virus outbreak mobility declined, but significantly more in areas with higher civic capital, both before and after a mandatory national lockdown. Simulating a SIR model calibrated on Italy, we estimate that if all provinces had the same civic capital as those in top-quartile, COVID-related deaths would have been ten times lower.

Keywords: civic capital; Culture; Externalities; social distancing; COVID-19 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D91 Z1 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020-05
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-eur and nep-ltv
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (31)

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Related works:
Journal Article: Asocial capital: Civic culture and social distancing during COVID-19 (2021) Downloads
Working Paper: Asocial Capital: Civic Culture and Social Distancing during COVID-19 (2020) Downloads
Working Paper: Asocial Capital: Civic Culture and Social Distancing during COVID-19 (2020) Downloads
Working Paper: Asocial capital: Civic culture and social distancing during COVID-19 (2020) Downloads
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