Targeting Public Services through Unequal Treatment of Unequals
AbstractWhen private goods are publicly provided, government authorities have to determine the distribution of services on recipients. In this paper, the public service provider is assumed to maximize utility defined over service supply to different target groups, given a budget constraint. The production technology is target group specific and depends on the ability of each target group to produce service outcomes. Three benchmark allocation principles are identified: equality of treatment (ET), equality of outcome (EO) and equality of marginal cost (EMC). These principles can be considered to be consistent with special cases of a public preference model, which allows for compromises between different allocation principles. The condition of technological dominance implies that there is a clear-cut equity-productivity trade-off, whereas violations of this condition may reduce the significance of the trade-off.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Research Department of Statistics Norway in its series Discussion Papers with number 558.
Date of creation: Sep 2008
Date of revision:
treatment targeting; technological dominance; equity-productivity trade-off; publicly provided private goods; in-kind transfers;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- H42 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Publicly Provided Private Goods
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Kelman, Steven, 1986. "A Case for In-Kind Transfers," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(01), pages 55-73, April.
- Tobin, James, 1970. "On Limiting the Domain of Inequality," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(2), pages 263-77, October.
- Janet Currie & Firouz Gahvari, 2007.
"Transfers in Cash and In Kind: Theory Meets the Data,"
NBER Working Papers
13557, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Janet Currie & Firouz Gahvari, 2008. "Transfers in Cash and In-Kind: Theory Meets the Data," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 46(2), pages 333-83, June.
- Aaberge, Rolf & Langorgen, Audun, 2003. " Fiscal and Spending Behavior of Local Governments: Identification of Price Effects When Prices Are Not Observed," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 117(1-2), pages 125-61, October.
- van de Walle, Dominique, 1998. "Targeting Revisited," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 13(2), pages 231-48, August.
- Nichols, Albert L & Zeckhauser, Richard J, 1982. "Targeting Transfers through Restrictions on Recipients," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(2), pages 372-77, May.
- Behrman, Jere R & Craig, Steven G, 1987. "The Distribution of Public Services: An Exploration of Local Governmental Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(1), pages 37-49, March.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (J Bruusgaard).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.