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Why do education vouchers fail at the ballot box?

Author

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  • Bearse, Peter
  • Cardak, Buly A.
  • Glomm, Gerhard
  • Ravikumar, B.

Abstract

We compare a uniform voucher regime against the status quo mix of public and private education, focusing on the distribution of welfare gains and losses across households by income. We argue that the topping-up option available under uniform vouchers is not sufficiently valuable for the poorer households, so the voucher regime is defeated at the polls. Our result is robust to partial voter turnout and efficiency differences between public and private schools, but depends critically on the opting-out feature in the current system.

Suggested Citation

  • Bearse, Peter & Cardak, Buly A. & Glomm, Gerhard & Ravikumar, B., 2013. "Why do education vouchers fail at the ballot box?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 26-37.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:32:y:2013:i:c:p:26-37 DOI: 10.1016/j.ejpoleco.2013.06.005
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    Cited by:

    1. Buckley, Neil & Cuff, Katherine & Hurley, Jeremiah & Mestelman, Stuart & Thomas, Stephanie & Cameron, David, 2016. "Should I stay or should I go? Exit options within mixed systems of public and private health care finance," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 131(PB), pages 62-77.
    2. Bearse, Peter & Cardak, Buly A. & Glomm, Gerhard & Ravikumar, B., 2013. "Why do education vouchers fail at the ballot box?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 26-37.
    3. Neil Buckley & Katherine Cuff & Jeremiah Hurley & Stuart Mestelman & Stephanie Thomas & David Cameron, 2014. "Should I Stay or Should I Go? Public Provision of a Private Good with an Exit Option," Department of Economics Working Papers 2014-01, McMaster University.
    4. Yeşilırmak, Muharrem, 2016. "A quantitative analysis of Turkish Private Education Reform," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 76-88.
    5. Buckley, Neil & Cuff, Katherine & Hurley, Jeremiah & Mestelman, Stuart & Thomas, Stephanie & Cameron, David, 2015. "Support for public provision of a private good with top-up and opt-out: A controlled laboratory experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 111(C), pages 177-196.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Education vouchers; Majority voting; Calibration; Welfare gains; Partial voter turnout;

    JEL classification:

    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • H52 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Education

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