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Centralized vs. Decentralized Redistribution: A Case for Interregional Transfer Mechanisms

  • Andreas Pfingsten
  • Andreas Wagener

According to conventional wisdom, Musgrave's “RedistributionBranch” should be assigned to the central level of governmentin a federation. Otherwise, fiscal externalities created by themobility of the poor would render decentralized redistributioninefficient, if not impossible. The paper objects to this viewand argues that decentralized intraregional redistribution canyield efficient outcomes if it is combined with cleverly designedinterregional transfer mechanisms. Within a general frameworkwe give necessary and sufficient conditions for interregionaltransfer schemes to implement efficient allocations as Nash equilibriaof a decentralized redistribution game. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1023/A:1008656830324
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Article provided by Springer & International Institute of Public Finance in its journal International Tax and Public Finance.

Volume (Year): 4 (1997)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
Pages: 429-451

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Handle: RePEc:kap:itaxpf:v:4:y:1997:i:4:p:429-451
DOI: 10.1023/A:1008656830324
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  1. Wildasin, David E, 1991. "Income Redistribution in a Common Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 757-74, September.
  2. Wildasin, D.E., 1992. "Income Restribution and Migration," Papers 92-003, Indiana - Center for Econometric Model Research.
  3. Sinn, Hans-Werner, 1990. "Tax harmonization and tax competition in Europe," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(2-3), pages 489-504, May.
  4. John B. Burbidge & Gordon M. Myers, 1994. "Redistribution within and across the Regions of a Federation," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 27(3), pages 620-36, August.
  5. Bureau, Dominique & Champsaur, Paul, 1992. "Fiscal Federalism and European Economic Unification," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 88-92, May.
  6. Brown, Charles C. & Oates, Wallace E., 1987. "Assistance to the poor in a federal system," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 307-330, April.
  7. CREMER, Helmuth & FOURGEAUD, Virginie & LEITE-MONTEIRO, Manuel & MARCHAND, Maurice, . "Mobility and redistribution: A survey," CORE Discussion Papers RP 1371, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  8. Charles Blackorby & David Donaldson & Maria Auersperg, 1981. "A New Procedure for the Measurement of Inequality within and among Population Subgroups," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 14(4), pages 665-85, November.
  9. Leonid Hurwicz, 1994. "Economic design, adjustment processes, mechanisms, and institutions," Review of Economic Design, Springer;Society for Economic Design, vol. 1(1), pages 1-14, December.
  10. Robin W. Boadway & Frank R. Flatters, 1982. "Efficiency and Equalization Payments in a Federal System of Government: A Synthesis and Extension of Recent Results," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 15(4), pages 613-33, November.
  11. Bhagwati, Jagdish N & Brecher, Richard A & Hatta, Tatsuo, 1983. "The Generalized Theory of Transfers and Welfare: Bilateral Transfers in a Multilateral World," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(4), pages 606-18, September.
  12. Myers, Gordon M., 1990. "Optimality, free mobility, and the regional authority in a federation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 107-121, October.
  13. Buhl, Hans Ulrich & Pfingsten, Andreas, 1990. "On the distribution of public funds," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 363-376, December.
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