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Preferences for Redistribution

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  • Alberto F. Alesina
  • Paola Giuliano

Abstract

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.

Suggested Citation

  • Alberto F. Alesina & Paola Giuliano, 2009. "Preferences for Redistribution," NBER Working Papers 14825, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:14825
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs

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