Building Bridges: Heterogeneous Jurisdictions, Endogenous Spillovers, and the Benefits of Decentralization
We model two heterogeneous districts of unequal size that may enjoy each other's local public good if a costly national infrastructure (the bridge) is provided. We compare a decentralized regime where local public goods are decided locally and the bridge centrally, with a centralized regime where all decisions are taken centrally, under both benevolent planner and median voter decision making. In both cases, it may happen that either both regimes build the bridge, none, or only one does. We provide a full-edged welfare comparison of all the possibilities. When the bridge is built in both regimes, centralization dominates if the spillovers allowed by the bridge are sufficiently high. When the bridge is not built in the centralized regime, decentralization is always preferred. We also show that, under some circumstances, it may happen that decentralization dominates even if it does not build the bridge, while the centralized regime does. Finally, we suggest a simple mechanism to avoid the costs imposed by the centralized regime upon minorities: allocating decision power over the local public goods and the bridge to different local constituents.
|Date of creation:||Dec 2010|
|Date of revision:||Dec 2010|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Avenida da República no 79, 1050-243 Lisboa|
Phone: 21 799 81 50
Fax: 21 799 81 54
Web page: http://gee.min-economia.pt
More information through EDIRC
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.:
- Rubinchik-Pessach, Anna, 2005. "Can decentralization be beneficial?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(7), pages 1231-1249, July.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mde:wpaper:0027. 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: (Ricardo Pinheiro Alves)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.