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Snobbery, Racism, or Mutual Distaste: What Promotes and Hinders Cooperation in Local Public-Good Provision?


  • David M. Brasington

    (Louisiana State University)


A political jurisdiction may decide to cooperate in public schooling provision with its neighbors or remain independent. The determinants of the consolidation decision are compared for the richer and the poorer and for the whiter and the less white jurisdiction in each potential consolidation pair. Property values and scale economies matter most. However, poorer jurisdictions prefer merging with richer ones that are less white than themselves. Whiter jurisdictions prefer to consolidate with less white ones of similar income. Less white jurisdictions are more open to consolidation with whiter ones if their incomes differ in either direction. Traditional club-theory predictions are not supported. © 2003 President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Suggested Citation

  • David M. Brasington, 2003. "Snobbery, Racism, or Mutual Distaste: What Promotes and Hinders Cooperation in Local Public-Good Provision?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(4), pages 874-883, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:85:y:2003:i:4:p:874-883

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Reingewertz, Yaniv, 2012. "Do municipal amalgamations work? Evidence from municipalities in Israel," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 240-251.
    2. Edoardo Di Porto & Angela Parenti & Sonia Paty & Zineb Abidi, 2017. "Local government cooperation at work: a control function approach," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(2), pages 435-463.
    3. Nora Gordon & Brian Knight, 2006. "The Causes of Political Integration: An Application to School Districts," NBER Working Papers 12047, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Kelly Tiller & Paul Jakus, 2004. "Explaining Cooperation in Municipal Solid Waste Management," Working Papers 2004-07, Utah State University, Department of Economics.
    5. repec:bla:jorssa:v:180:y:2017:i:2:p:633-656 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Saarimaa, Tuukka & Tukiainen, Janne, 2016. "Local representation and strategic voting: Evidence from electoral boundary reforms," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 31-45.
    7. Kumar Das, Pranab & Kar, Saibal & Kayal, Madhumanti, 2011. "Religious Minorities and Provision of Public Goods: Evidence from Rural West Bengal," IZA Discussion Papers 6154, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. Gallier, Carlo & Goeschl, Timo & Kesternich, Martin & Lohse, Johannes & Reif, Christiane & Römer, Daniel, 2017. "Leveling up? An inter-neighborhood experiment on parochialism and the efficiency of multi-level public goods provision," Working Papers 0630, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
    9. Gordon, Nora & Knight, Brian, 2009. "A spatial merger estimator with an application to school district consolidation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(5-6), pages 752-765, June.
    10. Saarimaa, Tuukka & Tukiainen, Janne, 2012. "Politics in coalition formation of local governments," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 58528, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    11. Antecol, Heather & Cobb-Clark, Deborah A., 2010. "The effect of community-level socio-economic conditions on threatening racial encounters," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 517-529, November.
    12. Hyytinen, Ari & Saarimaa, Tuukka & Tukiainen, Janne, 2014. "Electoral vulnerability and size of local governments: Evidence from voting on municipal mergers," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 120(C), pages 193-204.
    13. Bowman Cutter, W. & DeShazo, J.R., 2007. "The environmental consequences of decentralizing the decision to decentralize," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 32-53, January.

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