A More Complex Equilibrium in Performance

Geoffrey Brennan and Philip Pettit

in The Economy of Esteem

Published in print March 2004 | ISBN: 9780199246489
Published online November 2004 | e-ISBN: 9780191601460 | DOI:
A More Complex Equilibrium in Performance

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Performances in some estimable domain might be neither esteemed nor disesteemed: they might fall in some ‘normal’ range. This fact makes for a more complex model of equilibrium than that explored in Ch. 5, but many of the same feedback effects are present. However, it is not the case that esteem-seeking is strictly zero-sum: increased esteem for A is not necessarily bought at the cost of less esteem for all others. The ‘three-range’ version of the basic model has implications for risk-taking and risk-aversion over different ranges of performance: persons earning small amounts of positive esteem will tend to be risk-loving. Persons earning small amounts of disesteem will tend to be risk-averse. Some policy implications of this property are derived.

Keywords: equilibrium; normal range; positive sum; risk-aversion/loving

Chapter.  7248 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Microeconomics

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