IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

The Architecture of Federations: Constitutions, Bargaining, and Moral Hazard

  • Kessler, Anke
  • Luelfesmann, Christoph
  • Myers, Gordon M

The paper studies a federal system where a region provides non-contractible essential inputs for the successful implementation of a local public policy project with spill-overs, and where bargaining between different levels of government may ensure efficient decision making ex post. We ask whether the authority over the public policy measure should rest with the local government or with the central government, allowing financial relationships within the federation to be designed optimally. Centralization is shown to dominate when governments are benevolent. With regionally biased governments, both centralization and decentralization are suboptimal as long as political bargaining does not take place. With bargaining, however, the first best can often be achieved under decentralization, but not under centralization. At the root of this result is the alignment of decision making over essential inputs and project size under decentralized governance.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=7244
Download Restriction: CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at subscribers@cepr.org

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 7244.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: Mar 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7244
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Centre for Economic Policy Research, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ.

Phone: 44 - 20 - 7183 8801
Fax: 44 - 20 - 7183 8820

Order Information: Email:


References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Wallace E. Oates, 1999. "An Essay on Fiscal Federalism," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(3), pages 1120-1149, September.
  2. Aghion, Philippe & Dewatripont, Mathias & Rey, Patrick, 1994. "Renegotiation Design with Unverifiable Information," Scholarly Articles 12375014, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  3. Kessler, Anke, 2010. "Communication in Federal Politics: Universalism, Policy Uniformity, and the Optimal Allocation of Fiscal Authority," CEPR Discussion Papers 7910, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Oliver Hart & Sanford Grossman, 1985. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Working papers 372, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  5. Cremer, Jacques & Palfrey, Thomas R., 2006. "An equilibrium voting model of federal standards with externalities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(10-11), pages 2091-2106, November.
  6. Donald B. Hausch & Yeon-Koo Che, 1999. "Cooperative Investments and the Value of Contracting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(1), pages 125-147, March.
  7. Hart, Oliver D. & Moore, John, 1990. "Property Rights and the Nature of the Firm," Scholarly Articles 3448675, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  8. Alberto Alesina & Enrico Spolaore, 1997. "On the Number and Size of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1027-1056.
  9. Congressional Budget Office, 2013. "Federal Grants to State and Local Governments," Reports 43967, Congressional Budget Office.
  10. Raquel Fernandez & Richard Rogerson, 1999. "Equity and Resources: An Analysis of Education Finance Systems," NBER Working Papers 7111, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Christoph Lülfesmann, 2000. "Central Governance or Subsidiarity: A Property-Rights Approach to Federalism," Bonn Econ Discussion Papers bgse5_2001, University of Bonn, Germany.
  12. Casella, Alessandra, 1992. "On Markets and Clubs: Economic and Political Integration of Regions with Unequal Productivity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 115-21, May.
  13. Hart, Oliver, 1995. "Firms, Contracts, and Financial Structure," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198288817, December.
  14. Jean Tirole, 1999. "Incomplete Contracts: Where Do We Stand?," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(4), pages 741-782, July.
  15. Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1997. "Formal and Real Authority in Organizations," Scholarly Articles 4554125, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  16. Bård Harstad, 2007. "Harmonization and Side Payments in Political Cooperation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 871-889, June.
  17. Seabright, Paul, 1994. "Accountability and Decentralization in Government: An Incomplete Contracts Model," CEPR Discussion Papers 889, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  18. Alesina, Alberto F & Angeloni, Ignazio & Etro, Federico, 2003. "International Unions," CEPR Discussion Papers 3913, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 2003. "Centralized versus decentralized provision of local public goods: a political economy approach," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(12), pages 2611-2637, December.
  20. Hafer, Catherine & Landa, Dimitri, 2007. "Public Goods in Federal Systems," Quarterly Journal of Political Science, now publishers, vol. 2(3), pages 253-275, August.
  21. Hikaru Ogawa & David E. Wildasin, 2007. "Think Locally, Act Locally: Spillovers, Spillbacks, and Efficient Decentralized Policymaking," CESifo Working Paper Series 2142, CESifo Group Munich.
  22. repec:cbo:report:43967 is not listed on IDEAS
  23. Caillaud, B. & Jullien, B. & Picard, P., 1996. "Hierarchical organization and incentives," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-5), pages 687-695, April.
  24. Crémer, Jacques & Palfrey, Thomas, 2000. "Federal Mandates by Popular Demand," IDEI Working Papers 120, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse, revised 2001.
  25. Ellingsen, Tore, 1998. "Externalities vs internalities: a model of political integration," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 251-268, May.
  26. Robert P. Inman & Daniel L. Rubinfeld, 1997. "Rethinking Federalism," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(4), pages 43-64, Fall.
  27. Lockwood, Ben, 1998. "Distributive Politics and the Costs of Centralization," CEPR Discussion Papers 2046, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  28. Wallace Oates, 2005. "Toward A Second-Generation Theory of Fiscal Federalism," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 12(4), pages 349-373, August.
  29. Rubinchik-Pessach, Anna, 2005. "Can decentralization be beneficial?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(7), pages 1231-1249, July.
  30. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1996. "Federal Fiscal Constitutions: Risk Sharing and Redistribution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(5), pages 979-1009, October.
  31. Congressional Budget Office, 2013. "Federal Grants to State and Local Governments," Reports 43967, Congressional Budget Office.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7244. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.