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Tax Amnesties and Political Participation

Author

Listed:
  • Benno Torgler

    (Yale Center for International and Area Studies and CREMA (Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts))

  • Christoph A. Schaltegger

    (Swiss Federal Tax Administration, University of St. Gallen, and CREMA)

Abstract

In many countries, thinking about a (new) tax amnesty is currently in vogue. However, international experience shows that the financial success of such a tax amnesty is not guaranteed, in part because it is thought that tax amnesties may over time undermine tax compliance. This article conducts experiments in two different countries (Switzerland and Costa Rica) to examine the effects of amnesties on compliance. In contrast to other experiments, these experiments analyze the relationship between tax compliance and subjects’ possibility to vote for or against an amnesty. The results suggest that tax compliance only increases after voting, when people get the opportunity to discuss the amnesty prior to voting. Thus, voting with discussion may induce a kind of civic duty, as taxpayers become aware of the importance of contributing to the provision of public goods.

Suggested Citation

  • Benno Torgler & Christoph A. Schaltegger, 2005. "Tax Amnesties and Political Participation," Public Finance Review, , vol. 33(3), pages 403-431, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:pubfin:v:33:y:2005:i:3:p:403-431
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Torgler, Benno & Schneider, Friedrich & Schaltegger, Christoph A., 2007. "With or Against the People? The Impact of a Bottom-Up Approach on Tax Morale and the Shadow Economy," Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics, Working Paper Series qt6331x6vz, Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics.
    2. Benno Torgler & Markus Schaffner & Alison Macintyre, 2007. "Tax Compliance, Tax Morale, and Governance Quality," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU paper0727, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
    3. Jorge Martinz-Vazquez & Benno Torgler, 2005. "The Evolution of Tax Morale in Modern Spain," CREMA Working Paper Series 2005-33, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
    4. Lars Gläser & Martin Halla, 2008. "Die EU-Zinsenrichtlinie: Ein Schuss in den Ofen?," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 9(1), pages 83-101, February.
    5. Dulleck, Uwe & Fooken, Jonas & Newton, Cameron & Ristl, Andrea & Schaffner, Markus & Torgler, Benno, 2016. "Tax compliance and psychic costs: Behavioral experimental evidence using a physiological marker," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 9-18.
    6. Benno Torgler & Friedrich Schneider & Christoph Schaltegger, 2010. "Local autonomy, tax morale, and the shadow economy," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 144(1), pages 293-321, July.
    7. Torgler, Benno & Schneider, Friedrich, 2007. "Shadow Economy, Tax Morale, Governance and Institutional Quality: A Panel Analysis," Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics, Working Paper Series qt26s710z8, Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics.
    8. Hari Luitel & Mehmet Tosun, 2014. "A reexamination of state fiscal health and amnesty enactment," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 21(5), pages 874-893, October.
    9. repec:qut:qubewp:001 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Gerxhani, Klarita & Schram, Arthur, 2006. "Tax evasion and income source: A comparative experimental study," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 402-422, June.
    11. Simon Gaechter, 2006. "Conditional cooperation: Behavioral regularities from the lab and the field and their policy implications," Discussion Papers 2006-03, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
    12. Friedrich Schneider & Désirée Teobaldelli, 2012. "Beyond the Veil of Ignorance: The Influence of Direct Democracy on the Shadow Economy," CESifo Working Paper Series 3749, CESifo Group Munich.
    13. Casal, Sandro & Kogler, Christoph & Mittone, Luigi & Kirchler, Erich, 2016. "Tax compliance depends on voice of taxpayers," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 141-150.
    14. Gächter, Simon & Renner, Elke, 2014. "Leaders as Role Models for the Voluntary Provision of Public Goods," IZA Discussion Papers 8580, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    15. Benno Torgler & Christoph A. Schaltegger, 2006. "Tax Morale: A Survey with a Special Focus on Switzerland," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 142(III), pages 395-425, September.
    16. James Alm & Benno Torgler, 2011. "Do Ethics Matter? Tax Compliance and Morality," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 101(4), pages 635-651, July.
    17. Benno Torgler & Neven T. Valev, 2010. "Gender And Public Attitudes Toward Corruption And Tax Evasion," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 28(4), pages 554-568, October.
    18. Colin C. Williams, 2014. "Confronting the Shadow Economy," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 15370, April.
    19. Lars P. Feld & Bruno S. Frey, 2007. "Tax Evasion, Tax Amnesties and the Psychological Tax Contract," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU paper0729, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
    20. Koch, Christian & Müller, Cornelius, 2015. "Anticipated Tax Amnesties and Tax Compliance: An Experimental Study," Annual Conference 2015 (Muenster): Economic Development - Theory and Policy 112991, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    21. Hari Luitel & Mehmet Serkan Tosun, 2010. "An Examination of the Relation between State Fiscal Health and Amnesty Enactment," Working Papers 10-009, University of Nevada, Reno, Department of Economics;University of Nevada, Reno , Department of Resource Economics.

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