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Government Ideology and Tuition Fee Policy: Evidence from the German States

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  • Björn Kauder

    ()

  • Niklas Potrafke

    ()

Abstract

In January 2005 the German Supreme Court permitted the state governments to charge tuition fees. By exploiting the natural experiment, we examine how government ideology influenced the introduction of tuition fees. The results show that rightwing governments were active in introducing tuition fees. By contrast, leftwing governments strictly denied tuition fees. This pattern shows clear political alternatives in education policy across the German states: the political left classifies tuition fees as socially unjust; the political right believes that tuition fees are incentive compatible. By the end of 2014, however, there will be no tuition fees anymore: the political left won four state elections and abolished tuition fees. In Bavaria the rightwing government also decided to abolish tuition fees because it feared to become elected out of office by adhering to tuition fees. Electoral motives thus explain convergence in tuition fee policy.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 4205.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_4205

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Keywords: tuition fees; education policy; government ideology; partisan politics;

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References

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Cited by:
  1. Bjørnskov, Christian & Potrafke, Niklas, 2013. "The size and scope of government in the US states: Does party ideology matter?," Munich Reprints in Economics, University of Munich, Department of Economics 20275, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  2. Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "Evidence on the Political Principal-Agent Problem from Voting on Public Finance for Concert Halls," CESifo Working Paper Series 4306, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "Regierungsideologie und Studiengebühren in den deutschen Bundesländern," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 66(10), pages 19-24, 05.
  4. Björn Kauder & Benjamin Larin & Niklas Potrafke, 2014. "Was bringt uns die große Koalition? Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik," Ifo Working Paper Series Ifo Working Paper No. 172, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
  5. Markus Reischmann, 2014. "Staatsverschuldung in Extrahaushalten: Historischer Überblick und Implikationen für die Schuldenbremse in Deutschland," Ifo Working Paper Series Ifo Working Paper No. 175, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.

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