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Evolution over time of the determinants of preferences for redistribution and the support for the welfare state


  • Emma M. Iglesias
  • J. Atilano Pena López
  • José Manuel Sánchez Sántos


The objective of this article is to analyse the determinants of preferences for redistribution in Spain both at an aggregate and regional level. Using country level data, we put to the test the Alesina and Angeletos' (2005) hypothesis, the strong and positive relationship between the 'belief that luck determines income' and the support for redistributive policies. As an innovative contribution, we contrast this hypothesis using a set of panel data models with regional and time fixed effects. Our main finding is the existence of a structural change in preferences formation for redistribution in Spain between 1995 and 2007. Furthermore, the empirical results provide some evidence suggesting that (1) the belief that society is unfair have a moderate effect on the individuals' preferences for redistribution and (2) regional beliefs in Spanish regions are not equally important when determining demand for redistribution.

Suggested Citation

  • Emma M. Iglesias & J. Atilano Pena López & José Manuel Sánchez Sántos, 2013. "Evolution over time of the determinants of preferences for redistribution and the support for the welfare state," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(30), pages 4260-4274, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:45:y:2013:i:30:p:4260-4274
    DOI: 10.1080/00036846.2013.778948

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Roland Bénabou & Jean Tirole, 2006. "Belief in a Just World and Redistributive Politics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(2), pages 699-746.
    2. Sule Akkoyunlu & Ilja Neustadt & Peter Zweifel, 2009. "Why does the amount of income redistribution differ between the United States and Europe?," KOF Working papers 09-228, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ada Ferrer-i-carbonell & X. Ramos & M. Oviedo, 2013. "GINI Country Report: Growing Inequalities and their Impacts in Spain," GINI Country Reports spain, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.

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