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Forty Years of Public Economics: A Personal Perspective

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  • Jacques H. Dreze

Abstract

This paper presents a personal perspective on the field of public economics with emphasis on the interplay of theory and applications. In the early 1950s, theoretical developments grew out of practical applications. Yet, few economists succeed in creatively linking theory to real problems and our professional organization fails to promote adequately such contributions. The author also discusses briefly the success of public economics, its fragmentation into subfields, and its relation to macroeconomics. The writing of this paper was prompted by the author's participation in editing a volume of selected papers by William Vickrey, whose work is exemplary of the perspective presented here.

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/jep.9.2.111
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal Journal of Economic Perspectives.

Volume (Year): 9 (1995)
Issue (Month): 2 (Spring)
Pages: 111-130

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Handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:9:y:1995:i:2:p:111-30

Note: DOI: 10.1257/jep.9.2.111
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References

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  1. Boyes, William J & Happel, Stephen K, 1989. "Auctions as an Allocation Mechanism in Academia: The Case of Faculty Offices," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 37-40, Summer.
  2. McAfee, R Preston & McMillan, John, 1987. "Auctions and Bidding," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 25(2), pages 699-738, June.
  3. John McMillan, 1994. "Selling Spectrum Rights," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(3), pages 145-162, Summer.
  4. Bohm, Peter, 1984. "Revealing demand for an actual public good," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 135-151, July.
  5. Jerry A. Hausman & James M. Poterba, 1986. "Household Behavior and the Tax Reform Act of 1986," Working papers 437, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  6. Samuelson, P. A., 1986. "Theory of optimal taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 137-143, July.
  7. Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416.
  8. Arnott, Richard & de Palma, Andre & Lindsey, Robin, 1991. "A temporal and spatial equilibrium analysis of commuter parking," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 301-335, August.
  9. Edward Clarke, 1971. "Multipart pricing of public goods," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 17-33, September.
  10. Herbert E. Scarf, 1994. "The Allocation of Resources in the Presence of Indivisibilities," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1068, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  11. Peter Mieszkowski & Edwin S. Mills, 1993. "The Causes of Metropolitan Suburbanization," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 135-147, Summer.
  12. Tulkens, Henry, 1978. "Dynamic processes for public goods : An institution-oriented survey," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 163-201, April.
  13. Sandmo, Agnar, 1983. "Leif Johansen's contribution to public economics," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 317-324, August.
  14. William Vickrey, 1961. "Counterspeculation, Auctions, And Competitive Sealed Tenders," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 16(1), pages 8-37, 03.
  15. Feldstein, Martin S, 1974. "Social Security, Induced Retirement, and Aggregate Capital Accumulation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(5), pages 905-26, Sept./Oct.
  16. Peter Bohm, 1984. "Revealing demand for an actual public good," Framed Field Experiments 00129, The Field Experiments Website.
  17. William Vickrey, 1948. "Some Objections to Marginal-Cost Pricing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 56, pages 218.
  18. Dreze, Jacques H. & Arrow, Kenneth & Atkinston, Anthony B. & Basu, Kaushik & Honkapohja, Seppo & Krueger, Anne & Morales, Juan-Antonio & Stern, Nicholas, 1994. "Report of the IEA Committee on a new School of Economics and Economic Development (SEED) in the Third World," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 1-18, September.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Mongin, Philippe, 2006. "Normes et jugements de valeur en économie normative," Les Cahiers de Recherche 858, HEC Paris.
  2. Richard Arnott, 1998. "William Vickrey: Contributions to Public Policy," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 93-113, February.
  3. World Bank, 2005. "Primer on Demand-Side Management : With an Emphasis on Price-Responsive Programs," World Bank Other Operational Studies 8252, The World Bank.
  4. David, Laurent & Le Breton, Michel & Merillon, Olivier, 2007. "Public Utility Pricing and Capacity Choice with Stochastic Demand," IDEI Working Papers 489, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  5. Guillem López i Casasnovas & David Casado i Marín, . "Análisis prospectivo de la oferta de servicios públicos en España," Studies on the Spanish Economy 28, FEDEA.
  6. Maria Elena Tudor, 2011. "Administrative Services Public Market," Annals of University of Craiova - Economic Sciences Series, University of Craiova, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, vol. 1(39), pages 100-109.
  7. Agnar Sandmo, 1999. "Asymmetric Information and Public Economics: The Mirrlees-Vickrey Nobel Prize," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(1), pages 165-180, Winter.
  8. Williamson, Oliver E., 2009. "Transaction Cost Economics: The Natural Progression," Nobel Prize in Economics documents 2009-3, Nobel Prize Committee.
  9. David, Laurent & Le Breton, Michel & Merillon, Olivier, 2007. "Kolm as a Contributor to Public Utility Pricing, Second Best Culture and the Theory of Regulation," IDEI Working Papers 490, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.

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