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Reasoning and Institutions: Do Markets Facilitate Logical Reasoning in the Wason Selection Task?

Author

Listed:
  • Werner Güth
  • M. Vittoria Levati
  • Rupert Sausgruber

Abstract

We consider a society composed of two regions. Each of them provides a public good whose benefits reach beyond local boundaries. In case of decentralization, taxes collected by members of a region are spent only on that region's public good. In case of centralization, tax receipts from the two regions are pooled and used to finance both public goods according to the population size of each region. The experiment shows that centralization induces lower tax morale and less efficient outcomes. The reasons are that centralization gives rise to an interregional incentive problem and creates inequalities in income between regions.

Suggested Citation

  • Werner Güth & M. Vittoria Levati & Rupert Sausgruber, "undated". "Reasoning and Institutions: Do Markets Facilitate Logical Reasoning in the Wason Selection Task?," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2003-05, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
  • Handle: RePEc:esi:discus:2003-05
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Tax morale; fiscal federalism; public goods experiments;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
    • H70 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - General

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