Research

Publications

Stefano Carattini, Maria Carvalho & Samuel Fankhauser (2018), "Overcoming Public Resistance to Carbon Taxes"Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change, e531

Stefano Carattini, Andrea Baranzini & Rafael Lalive (2018), "Is Taxing Waste a Waste of Time? Evidence from a Supreme Court Decision"Ecological Economics, 148(C):131-151

Andrea Baranzini, Nicolas Borzykowski & Stefano Carattini (2018), "Carbon Offsets out of the Woods? Acceptability of Domestic vs. International Reforestation Programmes in the Lab"Journal of Forest Economics, 32:1-12

Kenneth Gillingham, Stefano Carattini & Daniel Esty (2017), "Lessons from First Campus Carbon-Pricing Scheme"Nature51:27-29

Stefano Carattini, Andrea Baranzini, Philippe Thalmann, Frédéric Varone & Frank Vöhringer (2017), "Green Taxes in a Post-Paris World: Are Millions of Nays Inevitable?", Environmental and Resource Economics, 68 97–128

Andrea BaranziniJeroen van den Bergh, Stefano Carattini, Richard B. HowarthEmilio Padilla & Jordi Roca (2017), "Carbon Pricing in Climate Policy: Seven Reasons, Complementary Instruments, and Political-economy Considerations"Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change, 8:e462

Andrea Baranzini & Stefano Carattini (2017), "Effectiveness, Earmarking and Labeling: Testing the Acceptability of Carbon Taxes with Survey Data", Environmental Economics and Policy Studies, 19(1) 197-227

Stefano Carattini & Alessandro Tavoni (2016), "How Green are Green Economists?", Economics Bulletin, 36(4) p.A224

Stefano Carattini, Andrea Baranzini & Jordi Roca (2015), "Unconventional Determinants of Greenhouse Gas Emissions: The Role of Trust", Environmental Policy & Governance 25(4) 243-257    

Andrea Baranzini & Stefano Carattini (2014), "Taxation of Emissions of Greenhouse Gases". In: Freedman B. (Ed.), Global Environmental Change, Springer

Working papers

"Trust and CO2 Emissions: Conditional Cooperation at a Global Scale" with Ara Jo

Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment Working Paper 294

In this paper we argue that the within-country cooperative culture sustained by trust positively affects international cooperative behavior. We focus on the role of social norms shared by trustworthy individuals and theoretically show how such norms can create incentives for trustworthy agents to cooperate with foreigners even when they are unsure of the trustworthiness of their foreign partners via reputation effects. We then provide empirical evidence in the context of climate change that an increase in trust leads to more global cooperation measured by larger reductions in CO2 emissions. We establish causality by obtaining a time-varying measure of inherited trust from the trust that descendants of US immigrants have inherited from their ancestors. The  measure allows us to have country fixed effects and thus to study how the evolution of trust is correlated with the change in CO2 emissions over time. Inherited trust turns out to be a significant factor that explains the changes in CO2 emissions across 26 countries worldwide including most European countries. The results are robust even when we study different time periods and control for a large set of time-varying factors that may affect trust and emissions at the same time. Our findings provide a plausible explanation for the existence of national, regional and local level mitigation efforts in the absence of a global agreement for climate change, which is difficult to reconcile with the conventional theory of collective action.

"What Drives Social Contagion in the Adoption of Solar Photovoltaic Technology?" with Andrea Baranzini and Martin Péclat

Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment Working Paper 270

Revise and resubmit

Increasing the use of renewable energy is central to address climate change. Recent research has suggested the existence of social contagion in the adoption of solar panels, which may contribute to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy. While the existing literature has focused on residential adoption only, we extend the analysis to private firms and farms, and include solar panels with different characteristics. We exploit a unique large dataset providing detailed information on about 60,000 solar installations in Switzerland, including their specific location at the street level and details on the timing of the technological adoption, and couple it with rich socioeconomic data at the municipality level. Our detailed data allow us to adopt an empirical strategy addressing the main threats to identification associated with social contagion, including homophily and reflection. We find that households' decisions to adopt the solar technology are dependent on pre-existing adoption, and in particular on spatially close and recent installations. Firms and farms solar PV adoptions react to neighboring PV panels, although to a lesser extent than households. Furthermore, companies are more influences by panels installed by other companies, compared to panels installed by households. By distinguishing between building-integrated and building-attached PV systems and including capacity categories, we provide evidence that both learning and imitation are important components of social contagion. As a result, our findings provide new insights on the mechanisms of social contagion and how they could be leveraged with targeted interventions.

"Cooperation in the Climate Commons" with Simon Levin and Alessandro Tavoni

Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment Working Paper 259

Revise and resubmit

Given the global public good properties of climate change mitigation, mitigation efforts have to rely on the willingness of individuals to contribute voluntarily to this public good, by reducing the demand on the environmental commons either in the form of "green" consumer behavior or through the acceptance of costly climate policy. Both are likely to be necessary. This paper surveys the existing empirical evidence on the scope for cooperation in the climate commons and on the effectiveness of possible interventions to spur it. We survey evidence that suggests a central role for local social norms in the provision of global public goods. We discuss the importance of the visibility of norms and the role of beliefs when such visibility is lacking. We conclude that some actors may behave as conditional cooperators also when confronted with global dilemmas, similarly to what takes place in the local commons.