The Effect of Language on Economic Behavior: Experimental Evidence from Children's Intertemporal Choices
Matthias Sutter (),
Daniela Glätzle-Rützler () and
Philipp Lergetporer ()
No 5532, CESifo Working Paper Series from CESifo Group Munich
According to Chen’s (2013) linguistic-savings hypothesis, languages which grammatically separate the future and the present (like English or Italian) induce less future-oriented behavior than languages in which speakers can refer to the future by using present tense (like German). We complement Chen’s approach with experimentally elicited time preference data from a bilingual city in Northern Italy. We find that German-speaking primary school children are about 46% more likely than Italian-speaking children to delay gratification in an intertemporal choice experiment. This result is robust when controlling for risk attitudes, IQ, family background, or when considering other languages.
Keywords: intertemporal choice; language; children; experiment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C91 D03 D90 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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Working Paper: The Effect of Language on Economic Behavior: Experimental Evidence from Children's Intertemporal Choices (2015)
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