Monday, July 28, 2014

Negative correlation between religiosity and technological innovation.

Thanks to my friend Guy for identifying "Forbidden Fruits: The Political Economy of Science, Religion, and Growth" by Roland Benabou, Davide Ticchi and Andrea Vindigni. I quote from the astract in which the authors cite "a new fact":
in both international and cross-state U.S. data, there is a significant negative relationship between religiosity and innovativeness (patents per capita), even after controlling for the standard empirical determinants of the latter.
Perhaps there is a deeper cultural variable. I would suppose that the more deeply conservative a culture, the more it might be marked by religiosity and the slower it would be to adopt new technologies. Correlation is not causation! Still the figures shown in the paper are worth thinking about.

1 comment:

Aloys Pagal Ongla said...

Very interesting study that highlights some pertinent facts. However, all this demonstrates is that religiousity and low patents coexist in certain areas. There is nothing that appears to demonstrate that the relationship is causal. It can be twisted and analyzed in a dozen or more different ways. That's the essence of research indeed. But it's clever anyway