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Civil servants’ education and the representativeness of the bureaucracy in environmental policy-making

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    Abstract

    We model and test the representativeness of environmental policy-making, as implied by cost-benefit analysis (CBA) results, in governmental agencies assuming that individual civil servants maximize their personal utility. Education may also influence civil servants’ behavior. The biologists in our sample have the highest valuation of environmental quality. We suspect that their training does not teach them about societal welfare maximization and that they consequently do not adjust their policy recommendation to CBA results, while the economists, who learn about welfare economics, do. The empirical results indicate that the economists adjust their private valuation of the environment by a factor giving a sufficient weight to the CBA results to make their average choice a cost-efficient one. Even the economists in our sample chose on average a policy that is costlier than the cost-efficient one yet clearly less expensive than the policy chosen by the biologists and social scientists.

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    File URL: http://www.transportportal.se/swopec/CTS2013-30.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by CTS - Centre for Transport Studies Stockholm (KTH and VTI) in its series Working papers in Transport Economics with number 2013:30.

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    Length: 36 pages
    Date of creation: 08 Oct 2013
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:hhs:ctswps:2013_030

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    Postal: Centrum för Transportstudier (CTS), Teknikringen 10, 100 44 Stockholm, Sweden
    Web page: http://www.cts.kth.se/

    Related research

    Keywords: Biologists; Bureaucracy; Civil servants; Education; Economists; Environmental policy; Political Economics; Representative bureaucracy; Surveys; Use of cost-benefit analysis; Weighted welfare;

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    1. Fredrik Carlsson & Mitesh Kataria & Elina Lampi, 2009. "Do EPA administrators recommend environmental policies that citizens want?," Jena Economic Research Papers 2009-057, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics.
    2. Philippe Aghion & Jean Tirole, 1994. "Formal and Real Authority in Organizations," Working papers 95-8, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
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