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The devolution tortoise and the centralization hare


  • John Kincaid


There has been much talk in recent years of devolving powers and functions from the federal government to the states. Some observers even proclaim a “devolution revolution”, the result of which will be a more efficient and effective federal government and more robust and responsive states. The generally recognized objectives of devolution include (1) more efficient provision and production of public services; (2) better alignment of the costs and benefits of government for a diverse citizenry; (3) better fits between public goods and their spatial characteristics; (4) increased competition, experimentation, and innovation in the public sector; (5) greater responsiveness to citizen preferences; and (6) more transparent accountability in policymaking.> Paper: John Kincaid Panelists: David R. Beam, David T. Ellwood, William F. Fox, and William B. Modahl Moderator: George Latimer

Suggested Citation

  • John Kincaid, 1998. "The devolution tortoise and the centralization hare," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue May, pages 13-40.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedbne:y:1998:i:may:p:13-40

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    Cited by:

    1. Dorothy M. Daley & Megan Mullin & Meghan E. Rubado, 2014. "State Agency Discretion in a Delegated Federal Program: Evidence from Drinking Water Investment," Publius: The Journal of Federalism, Oxford University Press, vol. 44(4), pages 564-586.
    2. Ann O'M. Bowman & Neal D. Woods, 2010. "Expanding the Scope of Conflict: Interest Groups and Interstate Compacts," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 91(3), pages 669-688.


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