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Policy Persistence

  • Stephen Coate
  • Stephen Morris

Policy persistence refers to the tendency of the political process to maintain policies once they have been introduced. This paper develops a theory of policy persistence based on the idea that policies create incentives for beneficiaries to take actions which increase their willingness to pay for these policies in the future. The theory is used to show that policy persistence may lead to political failure, in the sense that policy sequences arising in political equilibrium can be Pareto dominated.

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Paper provided by Penn Economics Department in its series Penn CARESS Working Papers with number 8a66677895e9fcb3f6d813c0c6f99b54.

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Handle: RePEc:cla:penntw:8a66677895e9fcb3f6d813c0c6f99b54
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  1. Gordon Tullock, 1975. "The Transitional Gains Trap," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 6(2), pages 671-678, Autumn.
  2. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1992. "Protection For Sale," NBER Working Papers 4149, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Krusell, Per & Quadrini, Vincenzo & Rios-Rull, Jose-Victor, 1997. "Politico-economic equilibrium and economic growth," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 243-272, January.
  4. Alesina, A. & Drazen, A., 1991. "Why Are Stabilizations Delayed?," Papers 6-91, Tel Aviv - the Sackler Institute of Economic Studies.
  5. Krusell, Per & Rios-Rull, Jose-Victor, 1996. "Vested Interests in a Positive Theory of Stagnation and Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(2), pages 301-29, April.
  6. Rausser, Gordon C., 1992. "Predatory Versus Productive Government: The Case of U.S. Agricultural Policies," Staff General Research Papers 724, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  7. Fernandez, Raquel & Rodrik, Dani, 1991. "Resistance to Reform: Status Quo Bias in the Presence of Individual-Specific Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1146-55, December.
  8. Dani Rodrik, 1989. "Policy Uncertainty and Private Investment in Developing Countries," NBER Working Papers 2999, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 1998. "Sources of Inefficiency in a Representative Democracy: A Dynamic Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(1), pages 139-56, March.
  10. John Ferejohn, 1986. "Incumbent performance and electoral control," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 50(1), pages 5-25, January.
  11. Glomm, Gerhard & Ravikumar, B, 1992. "Public versus Private Investment in Human Capital Endogenous Growth and Income Inequality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(4), pages 818-34, August.
  12. Braillard, S. Lael & Verdier, Thierry, 1994. "Lobbying and adjustment in declining industries," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(3-4), pages 586-595, April.
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