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Preferences for Redistribution

  • Alberto F. Alesina
  • Paola Giuliano

This paper discusses what determines the preferences of individuals for redistribution. We review the theoretical literature and provide a framework to incorporate various effects previously studied separately in the literature. We then examine empirical evidence for the US, using the General Social Survey, and for a large set of countries, using the World Values Survey. The paper reviews previously found results and provides several new ones. We emphasize, in particular, the role of historical experiences, cultural factors and personal history as determinants of preferences for equality or tolerance for inequality.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w14825.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 14825.

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Date of creation: Mar 2009
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Publication status: published as Alesina, Alberto, and Paola Giuliano. 2011. Preferences for Redistribution. In Handbook of Social Economics, A Bisin and Benhabib, J, 93-132. North Holland.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:14825
Note: LE POL
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  20. James Andreoni & Lise Vesterlund, 2001. "Which Is The Fair Sex? Gender Differences In Altruism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(1), pages 293-312, February.
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  24. Alberto Alesina & Nichola Fuchs Schuendeln, 2005. "Good bye Lenin (or not?): The Effect of Communism on People's Preferences," NBER Working Papers 11700, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  29. Metcalfe, Renuka & Sloane, Peter J., 2007. "Human Capital Spillovers and Economic Performance in the Workplace in 2004: Some British Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 2774, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  30. Lena Edlund & Rohini Pande, 2002. "Why Have Women Become Left-Wing? The Political Gender Gap And The Decline In Marriage," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(3), pages 917-961, August.
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