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Same Same But Different: Dialects and Trade

Lameli, Alfred and Nitsch, Volker and Südekum, Jens and Wolf, Nikolaus (2015):
Same Same But Different: Dialects and Trade.
In: German Economic Review, 16 (3), pp. 290-306. [Article]

Abstract

Language is a strong and robust determinant of international trade patterns: Countries sharing a common language trade significantly more with each other than countries using different languages, holding other factors constant. In this article we present the first analysis of the effect of language on trade in an intra-national context. Analyzing unique data for a single-language country, Germany, we find that similarities in the local dialect have a significantly positive impact on regional trade. We interpret this finding as evidence for the trade-promoting effect of culture, because linguistic similarities likely reflect cultural ties across regions, rather than lower costs of communication or similar institutions.

Item Type: Article
Erschienen: 2015
Creators: Lameli, Alfred and Nitsch, Volker and Südekum, Jens and Wolf, Nikolaus
Title: Same Same But Different: Dialects and Trade
Language: English
Abstract:

Language is a strong and robust determinant of international trade patterns: Countries sharing a common language trade significantly more with each other than countries using different languages, holding other factors constant. In this article we present the first analysis of the effect of language on trade in an intra-national context. Analyzing unique data for a single-language country, Germany, we find that similarities in the local dialect have a significantly positive impact on regional trade. We interpret this finding as evidence for the trade-promoting effect of culture, because linguistic similarities likely reflect cultural ties across regions, rather than lower costs of communication or similar institutions.

Journal or Publication Title: German Economic Review
Journal volume: 16
Number: 3
Uncontrolled Keywords: Language; culture; trade costs; gravity
Divisions: 01 Department of Law and Economics > Volkswirtschaftliche Fachgebiete > International Economics
01 Department of Law and Economics > Volkswirtschaftliche Fachgebiete
01 Department of Law and Economics
Date Deposited: 15 Dec 2015 12:28
Official URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/geer.12047/abstra...
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