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Early‐Life Circumstances Predict Measures of Trust among Adults: Evidence from Hunger Episodes in Post‐War Germany

Early‐Life Circumstances Predict Measures of Trust among Adults: Evidence from Hunger Episodes in... Can a major shock in childhood permanently shape trust? We consider a hunger episode in Germany after World War II, and we construct a measure of hunger exposure from official data on caloric rations set monthly by the occupying forces, providing regional and temporal variations. We correlate hunger exposure with measures of trust using data from a nationally representative sample of the German population. We show that individuals exposed to low caloric rations in childhood have significantly lower levels of trust as adults. This finding highlights that early‐life experiences can have long‐term effects in domains other than health, where such effects are well documented. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Scandinavian Journal of Economics Wiley

Early‐Life Circumstances Predict Measures of Trust among Adults: Evidence from Hunger Episodes in Post‐War Germany

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References (67)

Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
© 2019 The editors of The Scandinavian Journal of Economics.
ISSN
0347-0520
eISSN
1467-9442
DOI
10.1111/sjoe.12329
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Can a major shock in childhood permanently shape trust? We consider a hunger episode in Germany after World War II, and we construct a measure of hunger exposure from official data on caloric rations set monthly by the occupying forces, providing regional and temporal variations. We correlate hunger exposure with measures of trust using data from a nationally representative sample of the German population. We show that individuals exposed to low caloric rations in childhood have significantly lower levels of trust as adults. This finding highlights that early‐life experiences can have long‐term effects in domains other than health, where such effects are well documented.

Journal

The Scandinavian Journal of EconomicsWiley

Published: Jan 1, 2020

Keywords: ; ; ;

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