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Income Distribution, Communities and the Quality of Public Education: A Policy Analysis

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  • Raquel Fernandez
  • Richard Rogerson

Abstract

This paper analyzes within the context of a multicommunity model the effects of several policies that affect the financing of public education. The key features of the model are: (I) individuals differ with respect to income, (ii) individuals choose in which community to reside, (iii) communities are characterized by a proportional tax on income and a quality of public education, and (iv) a community's tax rate is chosen by majority vote. We examine three types of policies: subsidies for residency of specific income groups in particular communities, ceilings or floors on community level educational spending, and income redistribution. In each case we examine the consequences of these policies for both welfare and the quality of education across communities. We identify several policies which make all individuals better off and increase the quality of education in all communities.

Suggested Citation

  • Raquel Fernandez & Richard Rogerson, 1992. "Income Distribution, Communities and the Quality of Public Education: A Policy Analysis," NBER Working Papers 4158, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:4158
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1992. "Does School Quality Matter? Returns to Education and the Characteristics of Public Schools in the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(1), pages 1-40, February.
    2. Stiglitz, J. E., 1974. "The demand for education in public and private school systems," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 349-385, November.
    3. Durlauf, Steven N, 1996. "A Theory of Persistent Income Inequality," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 75-93, March.
    4. Rubinfeld, Daniel L., 1987. "The economics of the local public sector," Handbook of Public Economics,in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 11, pages 571-645 Elsevier.
    5. Westhoff, Frank, 1977. "Existence of equilibria in economies with a local public good," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 84-112, February.
    6. Epple, Dennis & Romer, Thomas, 1991. "Mobility and Redistribution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 828-858, August.
    7. Epple, Dennis & Filimon, Radu & Romer, Thomas, 1984. "Equilibrium among local jurisdictions: toward an integrated treatment of voting and residential choice," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 281-308, August.
    8. Rose-Ackerman, Susan, 1979. "Market models of local government: Exit, voting, and the land market," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 319-337, July.
    9. Roberts, Kevin W. S., 1977. "Voting over income tax schedules," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 329-340, December.
    10. Roland Benabou, 1993. "Workings of a City: Location, Education, and Production," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 619-652.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lundberg, S.J. & Startz, R., 1996. "Inequality and Race: Models and Policy," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 96-04, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
    2. Benabou, R., 1992. "Heterogeneity, Stratification, and Growth," Working papers 93-4, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    3. Gilbert, Guy & Picard, Pierre, 1996. "Incentives and optimal size of local jurisdictions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 19-41, January.
    4. Boldrin, Michele, 2005. "Public education and capital accumulation," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(2), pages 85-109, June.
    5. Blackburn, Keith & Bose, Niloy, 2003. "A model of trickle-down through learning," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 445-466, January.
    6. Alejandro Gaviria & Momi Dahan, 1999. "Sibling Correlations and Social Mobility in Latin America," Research Department Publications 4162, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    7. Michael Kremer, 1996. "How Much Does Sorting Increase Inequality?," NBER Working Papers 5566, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Gaviria, Alejandro, 2002. "Intergenerational mobility, sibling inequality and borrowing constraints," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 331-340, August.
    9. Raquel Fernandez & Richard Rogerson, 1993. "Zoning and the Political Economy of Local Redistribution," NBER Working Papers 4456, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Alejandro Gaviria & Momi Dahan, 1999. "Correlaciones entre hermanos y movilidad social en América Latina," Research Department Publications 4163, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.

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