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Taxing Human Capital Efficiently when Qualified Labour is Mobile

  • Wolfram F. Richter
  • Lars Kunze

The paper studies the effect that skilled labour mobility has on efficient education policy. The model is one of two periods in which a representative taxpayer decides on labour, education, and saving. The government can only use linear tax and subsidy instruments. It is shown that the mobility of skilled labour well constrains government’s choice of policy instruments. The mobility does not however affect second best education policy in allocational terms. In particular, education should be effectively subsidized if, and only if, the elasticity of the earnings function is increasing in education. This rule applies regardless of whether labour is mobile or immobile.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3366.

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Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3366
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  1. Stark, Oded & Wang, Yong, 2001. "Inducing Human Capital Formation: Migration as a Substitute for Subsidies," Economics Series 100, Institute for Advanced Studies.
  2. Poutvaara, Panu & Kanniainen, Vesa, 2000. "Why invest in your neighbor? Social contract on educational investment," Munich Reprints in Economics 19797, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  3. James Heckman & Pedro Carneiro, 2003. "Human Capital Policy," NBER Working Papers 9495, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Bovenberg, A.L. & Jacobs, B., 2001. "Redistribution and Education Subsidies are Siamese Twins," Discussion Paper 2001-82, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  5. Diamond, Peter A & Mirrlees, James A, 1971. "Optimal Taxation and Public Production: I--Production Efficiency," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(1), pages 8-27, March.
  6. Wilson, John Douglas, 1999. "Theories of Tax Competition," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 52(n. 2), pages 269-304, June.
  7. repec:zbw:rwirep:0140 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. David E. Wildasin, 2000. "Labor-Market Integration, Investment in Risky Human Capital, and Fiscal Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(1), pages 73-95, March.
  9. Andersson, Fredrik & Konrad, Kai A., 2002. "Human capital investment and globalization in extortionary states
    [Humankapitalinvestitionen und Globalisierung in Ausbeutungsstaaten]
    ," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance FS IV 02-01, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  10. Wolfram F. Richter, 2011. "Efficient Education Policy - A Second-Order Elasticity Rule," FinanzArchiv: Public Finance Analysis, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 67(1), pages 1-7, March.
  11. Bas Jacobs & Lans Bovenberg, 2008. "Optimal Taxation of Human Capital and theEarnings Function," CESifo Working Paper Series 2250, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. Wilson, John Douglas & Wildasin, David E., 2004. "Capital tax competition: bane or boon," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(6), pages 1065-1091, June.
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