IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

How Fair Is Income Taxation in the View of the German Public?

Listed author(s):
  • Jürgen Schupp
  • Gert G. Wagner

It is not possible to provide a scientific answer to questions regarding the 'fairness' of taxation. Nonetheless, empirical economics and social science research can still yield helpful information for legislators charged with deciding on the level and structure of the tax system. Such research also includes the public's assessment of the fairness of the tax system. At the beginning of 2005, DIW Berlin incorporated questions concerning the fairness of income taxation in its 'Socio-Economic Panel' longitudinal study. Preliminary findings of this research are now available. The tax burden on unskilled workers was considered excessively high by almost two-thirds of respondents. By contrast, the burden on the board members of large enterprises was considered too low by three-quarters of those surveyed, and this view was actually shared by two-thirds of the executive staff in the sample. However, it is not possible to draw any direct conclusions for economic and fiscal policy from these findings. The evaluation of such data is a wholly political act lying in the exclusive domain of the parliament. However, these results at least demonstrate unambiguously that when it comes to the issue of income and fiscal equity, people belonging to all sections of the population think in a more egalitarian manner than is assumed by large segments of public opinion and politics.

If 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.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Article provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its journal Weekly Report.

Volume (Year): 1 (2005)
Issue (Month): 22 ()
Pages: 269-272

in new window

Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwrp:wr1-22
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Mohrenstraße 58, D-10117 Berlin

Phone: xx49-30-89789-0
Fax: xx49-30-89789-200
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:diw:diwwrp:wr1-22. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Bibliothek)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.