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Optimal redistribution with unobservable disability: welfarist versus non-welfarist social objectives

Author

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  • PESTIEAU, Pierre

    (Université catholique de Louvain (UCL). Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE))

  • RACIONERO, Maria

Abstract

This paper examines the optimal non linear income and commodity tax when the same labor disutility can receive two alternative interpretations, taste for leisure and disability, but the disability is not readily observable. We compare the optimal policyunder alternative social objectives, welfarist and non-welfarist, and conclude that the non-welfarist objective, in which the planner gives a higher weight to the disutility of labour of the disabled individuals, is the only reasonable specification. It has some foundation in the theory of responsability; further, unlike the other specifications it yields an optimal solution that may involve a lower labour supply requirement from disabled individuals.

Suggested Citation

  • PESTIEAU, Pierre & RACIONERO, Maria, 2007. "Optimal redistribution with unobservable disability: welfarist versus non-welfarist social objectives," CORE Discussion Papers 2007035, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  • Handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2007035
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    File URL: http://www.uclouvain.be/cps/ucl/doc/core/documents/coredp2007_35.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Cremer Helmuth & Lozachmeur Jean-Marie & Pestieau Pierre, 2007. "Disability Testing and Retirement," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-34, February.
    2. Ravi Kanbur & Jukka Pirttilä & Matti Tuomala, 2006. "Non-Welfarist Optimal Taxation And Behavioural Public Economics," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 20(5), pages 849-868, December.
    3. Marc Fleurbaey & François Maniquet, 2006. "Fair Income Tax," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(1), pages 55-83.
    4. Ted O'Donoghue & Matthew Rabin, 2003. "Studying Optimal Paternalism, Illustrated by a Model of Sin Taxes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 186-191, May.
    5. Maurice Marchand & Pierre Pestieau & María Racionero, 2003. "Optimal redistribution when different workers are indistinguishable," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 36(4), pages 911-922, November.
    6. Dirk Van de gaer & Marc Fleurbaey & Walter Bossert, 1999. "Responsibility, talent, and compensation: A second-best analysis," Review of Economic Design, Springer;Society for Economic Design, vol. 4(1), pages 35-55.
    7. Marc Fleurbaey & François Maniquet, 2007. "Help the Low Skilled or Let the Hardworking Thrive? A Study of Fairness in Optimal Income Taxation," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 9(3), pages 467-500, June.
    8. Fleurbaey, Marc, 1995. "Equality and responsibility," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(3-4), pages 683-689, April.
    9. Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1982. "Self-selection and Pareto efficient taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 213-240, March.
    10. Schokkaert, Erik & Van de gaer, Dirk & Vandenbroucke, Frank & Luttens, Roland Iwan, 2004. "Responsibility sensitive egalitarianism and optimal linear income taxation," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 151-182, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jacquet, Laurence & Van de Gaer, Dirk, 2011. "A comparison of optimal tax policies when compensation or responsibility matter," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(11), pages 1248-1262.
    2. Laurence Jacquet & Dirk Van de Gaer, 2015. "Politiques fiscales optimales pour les bas revenus et principe de compensation," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 66(3), pages 579-600.
    3. Laurence Jacquet, 2010. "Take it or Leave it: Take-up, Optimal Transfer Programs, and Monitoring," CESifo Working Paper Series 3018, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Laurence Jacquet, 2014. "Tagging and redistributive taxation with imperfect disability monitoring," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 42(2), pages 403-435, February.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    optimal non-linear taxation; quasi-linear preferences; asymmetric information; responsibility;

    JEL classification:

    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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