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Renegotiation of Social Contracts by Majority Rule

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  • Dan Anderberg
  • Carlo Perroni

Abstract

We consider renegotiation of social earnings insurance arrangements by majority voting in an economy where ex-ante identical individuals make unobservable private investments in education. We show that voting-based renegotiation can result in a higher expected level of investment in comparison to the case where social insurance is determined by an appointed social planner. We also find that, with voting-based renegotiation, the availability of costly ex-post information about private investment can help overcome commitment problems. These findings call into question the practice of using a representative-consumer approach when modelling dynamic policy problems in large economies.

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Paper provided by Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics in its series EPRU Working Paper Series with number 00-15.

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Handle: RePEc:kud:epruwp:00-15

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  1. Robin Boadway & Nicolas Marceau & Maurice Marchand, 1992. "Investment in Education and the Time Inconsistency of Redistributive Tax Policy," Working Papers 860, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  2. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  3. Pearce, David & Stacchetti, Ennio, 1997. "Time Consistent Taxation by a Government with Redistributive Goals," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 282-305, February.
  4. Grossman, Sanford J & Hart, Oliver D, 1983. "An Analysis of the Principal-Agent Problem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(1), pages 7-45, January.
  5. George A. Akerlof, 1978. "A theory of social custom, of which unemployment may be one consequence," Special Studies Papers 118, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  6. Sinn, Hans-Werner, 1996. "Social Insurance, Incentives and Risk Taking," Munich Reprints in Economics 19834, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  7. Robin Boadway & Michael Keen, 1993. "Evasion and time consistency in the taxation of capital income," IFS Working Papers W93/20, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  8. Andersson, Frederik & Konrad, Kai A., 2001. "Globalization and human capital formation," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance FS IV 01-01, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  9. Panu Poutvaara, 2002. "Investment in Education and Redistributive Taxation without Precommitment," FinanzArchiv: Public Finance Analysis, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 59(2), pages 177-, May.
  10. Konrad, Kai A., 1999. "Privacy, time consistent optimal labor income taxation and education policy," IZA Discussion Papers 82, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Mathias Dewatripont & Eric Maskin, 1990. "Contract renegotiation in models of asymmetric information," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/9579, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  12. Sanford J Grossman & Joseph E Stiglitz, 1997. "On the Impossibility of Informationally Efficient Markets," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1908, David K. Levine.
  13. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopoly, Non-linear Pricing and Imperfect Information: The Insurance Market," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(3), pages 407-30, October.
  14. Fudenberg, Drew & Tirole, Jean, 1990. "Moral Hazard and Renegotiation in Agency Contracts," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(6), pages 1279-1319, November.
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