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How Do Taxpayers Respond to Public Disclosure and Social Recognition Programs? Evidence from Pakistan

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  • Waseem, Mazhar
  • Slemrod, Joel
  • Ur Rehman, Obeid

Abstract

We examine two Pakistani programs to see if the public disclosure of tax information and social recognition of top taxpayers promote tax compliance. Pakistan began revealing income tax paid by every taxpayer in the country from 2012. Simultaneously, another program began recognizing and rewarding the top 100 tax paying corporations, partnerships, self-employed individuals, and wage-earners. We find that both programs induced strong compliance responses. The public disclosure caused on average a 9 log-points increase in the tax paid by individuals exposed to the program. The increase was even larger for the social recognition program, around 17 log-points. Our results suggest that such programs can be important policy levers to mobilize resources, especially in weak-enforcement-capacity economies.

Suggested Citation

  • Waseem, Mazhar & Slemrod, Joel & Ur Rehman, Obeid, 2020. "How Do Taxpayers Respond to Public Disclosure and Social Recognition Programs? Evidence from Pakistan," CEPR Discussion Papers 14463, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:14463
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    Cited by:

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    2. Bittschi, Benjamin & Dwenger, Nadja & Rincke, Johannes, 2021. "Water the flowers you want to grow? Evidence on private recognition and donor loyalty," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 131(C).
    3. Reck, Daniel & Slemrod, Joel & Vattø, Trine Engh, 2022. "Public disclosure of tax information: Compliance tool or social network?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 212(C).
    4. Chen, Gao & Qi, Yu & Liu, Feng & Xing, Fei, 2022. "Taxation officers’ grassroots work experience and tax performance: Evidence from China," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(C).
    5. Mazhar Waseem, 2020. "Does Cutting the Tax Rate to Zero Induce Behavior Different from Other Tax Cuts? Evidence from Pakistan," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 102(3), pages 426-441, July.

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    Keywords

    Tax evasion;

    JEL classification:

    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies

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