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Agglomeration, tax competition and local public goods supply

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Abstract

In this paper we develop a framework for studying tax competition and local public goods supply in a setting where real and fiscal externalities interact with local democracy. We use the framework (a) to analyse if there is any reason to believe that local autonomy generally will give a tax race to the bottom (there is not), and (b) to look more closely at possible sources of oversupply or undersupply of publicly provided goods in a setting where local democracies compete for people. We identify two potential sources – the relationship between individual mobility and willingness to pay for publicly provided goods, and the mobility distribution of individuals (i.e. the distribution of individuals over residential preferences). The two could reinforce each other in a local democracy if the majority of the residents in a community are relatively mobile (the “American” case), while they would pull in opposite directions if the majority of residents are relatively immobile (the “European” case).

Suggested Citation

  • Norman, Eva Benedicte Danielsen & Norman, Victor Danielsen, 2010. "Agglomeration, tax competition and local public goods supply," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 15/2010, Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:nhheco:2010_015
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    Keywords

    Tax competition; local public goods; agglomeration; migration; regional economic policy;

    JEL classification:

    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • H73 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Interjurisdictional Differentials and Their Effects
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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