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The Political Economy of Regionalism

  • Sanjeev Goyal

    (Erasmus University Rotterdam)

  • Klaas Staal

    (Erasmus University Rotterdam)

We examine the incentives of regions in a country to unite or to separate. We find that smaller regions have greater incentives to unite, relative to larger regions. We show, however, that on the whole, majority voting on separation and union generates excessive incentives to separate. This leads us to examine the scope of alternative political institutions and rules in overcoming the potential inefficiency. Our paper also provides a wide range of examples to illustrate the different institutions used in actual practice to resolve such problems.

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Paper provided by Econometric Society in its series Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers with number 0287.

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Date of creation: 01 Aug 2000
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Handle: RePEc:ecm:wc2000:0287
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  1. Bolton, Patrick & Roland, Gerard & Spolaore, Enrico, 1996. "Economic theories of the break-up and integration of nations," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-5), pages 697-705, April.
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  4. Jackson, Matthew O. & Barbera, Salvador, 2002. "Choosing How Choose: Self-Stable Majority Rules," Working Papers 1145, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  5. Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416.
  6. 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.
  7. Wildasin, David E., 1988. "Nash equilibria in models of fiscal competition," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 229-240, March.
  8. Casella, Alessandra & Feinstein, Jonathan, 1991. "Public Goods in Trade: On the Formation of Markets and Political Jurisdictions," CEPR Discussion Papers 511, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Bewley, Truman F, 1981. "A Critique of Tiebout's Theory of Local Public Expenditures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(3), pages 713-40, May.
  10. Alberto Alesina & Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 1997. "Economic Integration and Political Disintegration," NBER Working Papers 6163, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Volij, Oscar & Dagan, Nir, 2000. "Formation of Nations in a Welfare-State Minded World," Staff General Research Papers 5201, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  12. Rubinfeld, Daniel L., 1987. "The economics of the local public sector," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 11, pages 571-645 Elsevier.
  13. Austin, D. Andrew, 1995. "Coordinated action in local public goods models: The case of secession without exclusion," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 235-256, October.
  14. Epple, Dennis & Romer, Thomas, 1991. "Mobility and Redistribution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 828-58, August.
  15. Alesina, Alberto & Wacziarg, Romain, 1998. "Openness, country size and government," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(3), pages 305-321, September.
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