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Noblesse Oblige? Preferences for Income Redistribution among Urban Residents in India

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Author Info

  • Takahiro Ito

    (Graduate School for International Development and Cooperation, Hiroshima University)

  • Kohei Kubota

    (Faculty of Education, Art and Science, Yamagata University)

  • Fumio Ohtake

    (Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University)

Abstract

Using an original dataset, we investigate the determinants of individual preferences for income redistribution in India. Our results suggest that the preferences of Indians for income redistribution are not really based on monetary motives. We found that people who have had negative experiences or perceptions of their future economic situation favour greater redistribution and people in a good economic (past, current, and future) condition also show a favourable attitude towards redistribution. In short, economically advantaged people seem to behave in a socially responsible manner. This 'noblesse oblige' effect can be explained mostly by prevalent social and religious beliefs.

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File URL: http://ir.lib.hiroshima-u.ac.jp/metadb/up/ZZT00001/IDEC-DP2_01-8.pdf
File Function: Revised version, 2013
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Hiroshima University, Graduate School for International Development and Cooperation (IDEC) in its series IDEC DP2 Series with number 1-8.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2011
Date of revision: Mar 2013
Handle: RePEc:hir:idecdp:1-8

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Web page: http://www.hiroshima-u.ac.jp/en/idec/
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Keywords: Government redistribution of income; Social preference; Relative economic position; Noblesse oblige; India;

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References

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  1. Takahiro Ito, 2007. "Caste Discrimination and Transaction Costs in the Labor Market: Evidence from Rural North India," Hi-Stat Discussion Paper Series d06-200, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
  2. Roland Bénabou & Efe A. Ok, 2001. "Social Mobility And The Demand For Redistribution: The Poum Hypothesis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(2), pages 447-487, May.
  3. Alesina, Alberto & Rodrik, Dani, 1994. "Distributive Politics and Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(2), pages 465-90, May.
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  17. Ravallion, Martin & Lokshin, Michael, 2000. "Who wants to redistribute?: The tunnel effect in 1990s Russia," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 87-104, April.
  18. Meltzer, Allan H & Richard, Scott F, 1981. "A Rational Theory of the Size of Government," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 914-27, October.
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