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Utilitarian Mechanism Design for an Excludable Public Good

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  • Martin Hellwig

    ()
    (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, Bonn)

Abstract

This paper studies the design of optimal utilitarian mechanisms for an excludable public good. Excludability provides a basis for making people pay for admissions; the payments can be used for redistribution and/or funding. Whereas previous work assumed that admissions are governed by the payment or nonpayment of a price, this paper allows for arbitrary admission rules. With sufficient inequality aversion, nondegenerate randomization in admissions is shown to be desirable for certain model specifications, with and without participation constraints. The paper also gives a sufficient condition on the distribution of preferences under which randomization is undesirable.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods in its series Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods with number 2009_12.

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Date of creation: Apr 2009
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Handle: RePEc:mpg:wpaper:2009_12

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Keywords: Utilitarian welfare maximization; Admission rules for excludable public goods; Randomization in optimal mechanisms;

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References

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  1. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1981. "Self-Selection and Pareto Efficient Taxation," NBER Working Papers 0632, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Martin Hellwig, 2008. "A Maximum Principle for Control Problems with Monotonicity Constraints," Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2008_04, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.
  3. Mirrlees, James A, 1971. "An Exploration in the Theory of Optimum Income Taxation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(114), pages 175-208, April.
  4. Manelli, Alejandro M. & Vincent, Daniel R., 2006. "Bundling as an optimal selling mechanism for a multiple-good monopolist," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 127(1), pages 1-35, March.
  5. Judd, Kenneth L., 1985. "The law of large numbers with a continuum of IID random variables," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 19-25, February.
  6. Brito, Dagobert L. & Hamilton, Jonathan H. & Slutsky, Steven M. & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1995. "Randomization in optimal income tax schedules," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 189-223, February.
  7. Guesnerie, Roger & Laffont, Jean-Jacques, 1984. "A complete solution to a class of principal-agent problems with an application to the control of a self-managed firm," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 329-369, December.
  8. Peter Norman, 2004. "Efficient Mechanisms for Public Goods with Use Exclusions," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(4), pages 1163-1188, October.
  9. Hellwig, Martin F., 2005. "A utilitarian approach to the provision and pricing of excludable public goods," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(11-12), pages 1981-2003, December.
  10. Sun, Yeneng & Zhang, Yongchao, 2009. "Individual risk and Lebesgue extension without aggregate uncertainty," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(1), pages 432-443, January.
  11. Martin Hellwig, 2005. "The Undesirability of Randomized Income Taxation under Decreasing Risk Aversion," Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2005_27, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.
  12. Roberts, Kevin W. S., 1977. "Voting over income tax schedules," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 329-340, December.
  13. Schmitz, Patrick W, 1997. "Monopolistic Provision of Excludable Public Goods under Private Information," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 52(1), pages 89-101.
  14. Sun, Yeneng, 2006. "The exact law of large numbers via Fubini extension and characterization of insurable risks," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 126(1), pages 31-69, January.
  15. J. A. Mirrlees, 1976. "Optimal Tax Theory: A Synthesis," Working papers 176, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  16. Hellwig, Martin F., 2007. "A contribution to the theory of optimal utilitarian income taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(7-8), pages 1449-1477, August.
  17. Drew Fudenberg & Jean Tirole, 1991. "Game Theory," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262061414, December.
  18. Feldman, Mark & Gilles, Christian, 1985. "An expository note on individual risk without aggregate uncertainty," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 26-32, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Christian Traxler, 2009. "Majority Voting and the Welfare Implications of Tax Avoidance," Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2009_22, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.

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