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The Mirrlees Approach to the Theory of Economic Policy

Listed author(s):
  • Robin Boadway

    ()

This paper summarizes James Mirrlees' key contribution to the theory of tax policy. It argues that the Mirrlees approach of viewing government as being constrained by imperfect information has changed profoundly how we look at the normative public policy. In this view, asymmetric information provides the limit to redistribution by restricting the efficiency-equity trade-off. It leads to consideration of other policy instruments for relaxing incentive constraints and improving the efficiency of redistributive policies. Some of these instruments include quantity controls, in-kind transfers and public provision or mandating of insurance, things we observe in practice. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1023/A:1008668509373
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Article provided by Springer & International Institute of Public Finance in its journal International Tax and Public Finance.

Volume (Year): 5 (1998)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 67-81

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Handle: RePEc:kap:itaxpf:v:5:y:1998:i:1:p:67-81
DOI: 10.1023/A:1008668509373
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  25. Ray C. Fair, 1971. "The Optimal Distribution of Income," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 85(4), pages 551-579.
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  28. Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1987. "Pareto efficient and optimal taxation and the new new welfare economics," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 15, pages 991-1042 Elsevier.
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  39. Robin Boadway & Nicolas Marceau, 1994. "Time inconsistency as a rationale for public unemployment insurance," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 1(2), pages 107-126, October.
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