Facoltà di scienze economiche

A joint reading of positional and relational goods

Fiorito, Luca ; Vatiero, Massimiliano

In: Economia politica : Journal of analytical and institutional economics, 2013, vol. 1, p. 87-96

Both relational and positional goods are based upon an idea of joint consumption - though with opposite signs. Indeed, in both cases, individuals' consumption choices take into account not only the individuals themselves, but others, as well. Given that relational goods provide a form of identity to their consumers, we show that a certain degree of positionality emerges within the consumption... Plus

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    Summary
    Both relational and positional goods are based upon an idea of joint consumption - though with opposite signs. Indeed, in both cases, individuals' consumption choices take into account not only the individuals themselves, but others, as well. Given that relational goods provide a form of identity to their consumers, we show that a certain degree of positionality emerges within the consumption of relational goods. Analogously, except in a two-agent context, each positional good also has a relational component. What emerges is a complex structure of economic outcomes based on both relational and positional motives.