IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Accountability and fiscal equalization

  • Kotsogiannis, Christos
  • Schwager, Robert

A common feature of multi-jurisdictional systems is equalization programs. The implementation of such programs, that is based on some measurement of sub-national fiscal capacity and effort, is particularly complex. Within a political economy model, this paper analyzes the impact of such systems on accountability, identifying a positive and a negative effect. The positive effect arises because with equalized fiscal resources, a consequence of equalization, citizens attach more importance to any remaining variation in public good supplies and so punish rent-taking more severely. This induces politicians to restrain themselves and so accountability improves. The negative effect arises because the complexity of such programs reduces the informational content of observed public good supplies. This introduces a perverse fiscal incentive that reduces accountability. Thus, the overall impact of equalization programs on accountability depends on the balance of these effects.

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: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6V76-4RJRVJ0-1/2/5f1481534a380c5797b988278cc1427d
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 92 (2008)
Issue (Month): 12 (December)
Pages: 2336-2349

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:92:y:2008:i:12:p:2336-2349
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

References listed on IDEAS
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.:

as in new window
  1. Sam Bucovetsky & Michael Smart, 2006. "The Efficiency Consequences of Local Revenue Equalization: Tax Competition and Tax Distortions," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 8(1), pages 119-144, 01.
  2. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 1992. "Incumbent Behavior: Vote Seeking, Tax Setting and Yardstick Competition," NBER Working Papers 4041, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Revelli, Federico, 2006. "Performance rating and yardstick competition in social service provision," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(3), pages 459-475, February.
  4. Wallace Oates, 2005. "Toward A Second-Generation Theory of Fiscal Federalism," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 12(4), pages 349-373, August.
  5. Johansson, Eva, 2003. "Intergovernmental grants as a tactical instrument: empirical evidence from Swedish municipalities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(5-6), pages 883-915, May.
  6. Baretti, Christian & Huber, Bernd & Lichtblau, Karl, 2002. "A Tax on Tax Revenue: The Incentive Effects of Equalizing Transfers: Evidence from Germany," Munich Reprints in Economics 20129, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  7. Marko Köthenbürger, 2002. "Tax Competition and Fiscal Equalization," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 9(4), pages 391-408, August.
  8. Boarnet, Marlon G. & Glazer, Amihai, 2002. "Federal grants and yardstick competition," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 53-64, July.
  9. Seabright, Paul, 1996. "Accountability and decentralisation in government: An incomplete contracts model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 61-89, January.
  10. Lockwood, Ben, 1998. "Distributive Politics and the Costs of Centralization," CEPR Discussion Papers 2046, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Jean Hindriks & Benjamin Lockwood, 2005. "Decentralization and Electoral Accountability: Incentives, Separation, and Voter Welfare," CESifo Working Paper Series 1509, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. Paul Belleflamme & Jean Hindriks, 2001. "Yardstick Competition and Political Agency Problems," Working Papers 441, Queen Mary University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
  13. WILDASIN, David E., . "Interjurisdictional capital mobility: Fiscal externality and a corrective subsidy," CORE Discussion Papers RP -831, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  14. Christos Kotsogiannis & Robert Schwager, 2006. "Fiscal Equalization and Yardstick Competition," Working Papers 2006-15, University of Kentucky, Institute for Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations.
  15. Buettner, Thiess, 2006. "The incentive effect of fiscal equalization transfers on tax policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(3), pages 477-497, February.
  16. Sotiris Karkalakos & Christos Kotsogiannis, 2007. "A spatial analysis of provincial corporate income tax responses: evidence from Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 40(3), pages 782-811, August.
  17. Timothy Besley & Michael Smart, 2005. "Fiscal Restraints and Voter Welfare," STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series 06, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
  18. Lockwood, Ben, 1997. "Inter-Regional Insurance," Discussion Papers 9703, Exeter University, Department of Economics.
  19. Bev Dahlby & Neil Warren, 2003. "Fiscal Incentive Effects of the Australian Equalisation System," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 79(247), pages 434-445, December.
  20. Christian Baretti & Bernd Huber & Karl Lichtblau, 2002. "A Tax on Tax Revenue: The Incentive Effects of Equalizing Transfers: Evidence from Germany," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 9(6), pages 631-649, November.
  21. Bordignon, Massimo & Cerniglia, Floriana & Revelli, Federico, 2004. "Yardstick competition in intergovernmental relationships: theory and empirical predictions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 325-333, June.
  22. Michael Smart, 1998. "Taxation and Deadweight Loss in a System of Intergovernmental Transfers," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 31(1), pages 189-206, February.
  23. Hofman, Bert & Kadjatmiko & Kaiser, Kai & Suharnoko Sjahrir, Bambang, 2006. "Evaluating fiscal equalization in Indonesia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3911, The World Bank.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

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:eee:pubeco:v:92:y:2008:i:12:p:2336-2349. 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: (Zhang, Lei)

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.