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Equity and Equality

  • Jean-Yves Duclos

Is horizontal equity (HE) the "most widely accepted principle of equity"? Or does it stand in "opposition to the advancement of human welfare"? This paper argues that the case for the HE principle is not as straightforward as is usually thought and that it requires advanced notions of justice and well-being. The most likely ethical basis HE appears to combine a Rawlsian maximin principle and a view of well-being that allows for relative local comparison effects. The paper also explores some of the dimensions of equality and well-being along which the HE principle can be applied and presents a number of examples showing how HE considerations can provide an important input into policy analysis.

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Paper provided by CIRPEE in its series Cahiers de recherche with number 0629.

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Date of creation: 2006
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Handle: RePEc:lvl:lacicr:0629
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  1. Mui, Vai-Lam, 1995. "The economics of envy," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 311-336, May.
  2. Jean-Yves Duclos & Peter Lambert, . "A Normative Approach to Measuring Classical Horizontal Inequity," Discussion Papers 97/3, Department of Economics, University of York.
  3. Duclos, Jean-Yves & Jalbert, Vincent & Araar, Abdelkrim, 2003. "Classical Horizontal Inequity and Reranking: an Integrating Approach," Cahiers de recherche 0306, CIRPEE.
  4. Balcer, Yves & Sadka, Efraim, 1986. "Equivalence scales, horizontal equity and optimal taxation under utilitarianism," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 79-97, February.
  5. Park, Albert & Wang, Sangui & Wu, Guobao, 2002. "Regional poverty targeting in China," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(1), pages 123-153, October.
  6. Ravallion, Martin, 2004. "Competing concepts of inequality in the globalization debate," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3243, The World Bank.
  7. Andrew Clark & Davis Masclet & Marie-Claire Villeval, 2006. "Effort and Comparison Income : Survey and Experimental Evidence," Working Papers 0601, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique (GATE), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Lyon 2, Ecole Normale Supérieure.
  8. Jean-Yves Duclos & Vincent Jalbert & Abdelkrim Araar, 2001. "Classical Horizontal Inequity and Reranking: an Integrated Approach," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 478.01, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  9. Joan Esteban & Debraj Ray, 2006. "Inequality, Lobbying, and Resource Allocation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 257-279, March.
  10. Steven R. Beckman & Buhong Zheng & John P. Formby & W. James Smith, 2002. "Envy, malice and Pareto efficiency: An experimental examination," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 19(2), pages 349-367.
  11. Kaplow, Louis, 1989. "Horizontal Equity: Measures in Search of a Principle," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 42(2), pages 139-54, June.
  12. Robert H. Frank, 2005. "Positional Externalities Cause Large and Preventable Welfare Losses," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 137-141, May.
  13. Louis Kaplow, 1985. "Horizontal Equity: Measures in Search of a Principle," NBER Working Papers 1679, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Sami Bibi & Jean-Yves Duclos, 2003. "Equity and Policy Effectiveness with Imperfect Targeting," Cahiers de recherche 0335, CIRPEE.
  15. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1981. "Utilitarianism and Horizontal Equity: The Case for Random Taxation," NBER Working Papers 0694, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Jalan, Jyotsna & Ravallion, Martin, 1998. "Are there dynamic gains from a poor-area development program?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 65-85, January.
  17. Michael Grimm, 2007. "Removing the anonymity axiom in assessing pro-poor growth," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 5(2), pages 179-197, August.
  18. Pfahler, Wilhelm, 1987. "Redistributive Effects of Tax Progressivity: Evaluating a General Class of Aggregate Measures," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 42(1), pages 1-31.
  19. King, Mervyn A, 1983. "An Index of Inequality: With Applications to Horizontal Equity and Social Mobility," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(1), pages 99-115, January.
  20. Alan J. Auerbach & Kevin A. Hassett, 2002. "A New Measure of Horizontal Equity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 1116-1125, September.
  21. Mervyn A. King, 1980. "An Index of Inequality: With Applications to Horizontal Equity and Social Mobility," NBER Working Papers 0468, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Feldstein, Martin, 1976. "On the theory of tax reform," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1-2), pages 77-104.
  23. Deepa Narayan & Patti Petesch, 2002. "Voices of the Poor : From Many Lands," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 14053, June.
  24. L. Randall Wray & Stephanie Bell, 2004. "Introduction," Chapters, in: Credit and State Theories of Money, chapter 1 Edward Elgar Publishing.
  25. Nava Ashraf & Colin F. Camerer & George Loewenstein, 2005. "Adam Smith, Behavioral Economist," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(3), pages 131-145, Summer.
  26. Ernst Fehr & Urs Fischbacher, 2004. "The nature of human altruism," Experimental 0402003, EconWPA.
  27. Philippe Robert-Demontrond & R. Ringoot, 2004. "Introduction," Post-Print halshs-00081823, HAL.
  28. John C. Harsanyi, 1955. "Cardinal Welfare, Individualistic Ethics, and Interpersonal Comparisons of Utility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 63, pages 309.
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