«Rivista Internazionale di Scienze Sociali» in the years 1935-1968 was edited by Francesco Vito (1902-1968), professor of Economics, Director of the Istituto di Economia, then Dean of the faculty of Political Sciences, Vice Rector and finally Rector of the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan. Vito was an important Italian economist and a brilliant contributor to the XX century debate in Catholic social thinking. His activity did not confined into the walls of the university and the «Rivista» reflects the activites carried out by him and shows his international contacts, as President
of the Associazione italiana di Scienze politiche, member of the Union International d’Etude Sociales, Vice-President of the International Political Science Association (1958-1964), member of the Unesco Italian Commission, and member of the first Board of the Societa` Italiana degli Economisti (1951-1954). With the «Rivista» Vito transferred knowledge and innovation, enlivening Italian economic debates.
Key words: History of economic thought since 1925, Francesco Vito, economics and institutions, economics and philosophy, catholic social thinking, economics and economic policy. JEL Classification: B2, B25, B31, B50.
Given the underlying theoretical issues, this paper presents an estimate of the household durable stock obtained by applying the «Perpetual Inventory Method» (PIM). This method generates an estimate of the stock by accumulating the past purchase of assets over their estimated service lives. The net stock is calculated by subtracting accumulated consumption from the gross stock. Information on the average service life for different kinds of durable goods and hypotheses concerning their retirement functions are needed.
The PIM has been applied under the assumption of fixed average service lives. A truncated bellshaped mortality function has been chosen to represent the retirement distribution. Time series of final consumption expenditure on durable goods have to be long enough to cover the assumed average service life. It is also necessary to use price indices to take into account the fact that the cumulated expenses have been made in different periods.
Key words: Consumer durables, household consumption, average service life, retirement distribution, gross stock, depreciation, saving, wealth.
JEL Classification: C43, D12.
The paper investigates the economic functions of the capitalist social firm. To this purpose we develop an extension of Hansmann’s theory of non-profit firms that is applicable to firms that are not controlled by patrons. The analysis reveals the conditions under which donor-owned non-profit organizational forms are efficient for non-profit enterprises. Finally, we ask in which sectors they are more likely to emerge with reference principally to Italy.
Key words: Theory of non-profit firms, donor-owned non-profits.
JEL Classification: L31, K22.
In the lab, in both one-shot interactions and first rounds of repeated games, subjects turn out to cooperate significantly more than the well-known, classical Homo Oeconomicus model predicts. Behavioural economics has persuasively shown that this ‘irrational’ rate of cooperation is compatible with the presence of reciprocity on the part of some of the individuals involved in the group. At the same time, a sizeable proportion of players act selfishly, failing to cooperate from the outset. However,
so far we lack theoretical models accounting for such stable coexistence of free riders and reciprocators.
Our work, by means of an evolutionary analysis of the Prisoner’s Dilemma (PD) game,
provides an endogenisation of such motivational heterogeneity and, under certain conditions, sheds light on the evolutionary stability of two-type populations consisting of positive proportions of egoists and reciprocators.
Key words: Free riding, reciprocity, cooperation, evolutionary game theory.
JEL Classification: B41, C73, C91, Z13.
This paper explores the links between the level of per capita income, growth and democracy, a central issue in the literature regarding economic policy. The first three sections focus on the socalled modernization hypothesis from both a theoretical and an empirical perspective. According to this theory, some factors, such as the level of education, the degree of urbanization and the rise of the middle class, are critical to the democratization process. The following two sections explore the opposite hypothesis, according to which it is democracy that promotes growth and economic development.
The theoretical arguments underpinning this hypothesis are grounded on the links between the quality of institutions, the protection of property rights, the strength of economic reforms and of the liberalization process, and the role of a free press. The sixth and last section explores the positive impact of democracy on human development, i.e. development considered as a multidimensional phenomenon.
Key words: Democracy, institutions and growth, human development.
JEL Classification: P16, O10, O15, O43.