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Quantifying spatial misallocaton in centrally provided public goods

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  • Siva Athreya

    (Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi)

  • Rohini Somanathan

    ()
    (Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi)

Abstract

We show how an optimization algorithm can be used to approximately quantify the costs to users of spatial misallocation in centrally provided goods.These methods can be employed to evaluate the large programs of public good construction that have been central features of economic plans in many developing countries. We apply these methods to the allocation of post-offices in an administrative block of South India between 1981-1991 and find that more appropriate choices for post office locations could have reduced aggregate costs of travel to citizens in this area by at least 20.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi, India in its series Indian Statistical Institute, Planning Unit, New Delhi Discussion Papers with number 04-07.

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Length: 17 pages
Date of creation: May 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ind:isipdp:04-07

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  1. Alesina, Alberto & Baqir, Reza & Easterly, William, 1999. "Public goods and ethnic divisions," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2108, The World Bank.
  2. Brian Knight, 2003. "Parochial Interests and the Centralized Provision of Local Public Goods: Evidence from Congressional Voting on Transportation Projects," NBER Working Papers 9748, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Banerjee, Abhijit & Somanathan, Rohini, 2007. "The political economy of public goods: Some evidence from India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 287-314, March.
  4. Khwaja, Asim Ijaz, 2001. "Can Good Projects Succeed in Bad Communities? Collective Action in the Himalayas," Working Paper Series rwp01-043, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  5. Esther Duflo, 2001. "Schooling and Labor Market Consequences of School Construction in Indonesia: Evidence from an Unusual Policy Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 795-813, September.
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