IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/pas/asarcc/2006-06.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Local public goods in a democracy: Theory and evidence from rural India

Author

Listed:
  • Santanu Gupta
  • Raghbendra Jha

    ()

Abstract

This paper examines allocation of local public goods over jurisdictions (villages) with individuals with identical tastes and different incomes, in a model with democratic institutions and majority rule. The median voter (in income) in each jurisdiction determines the probability of re-election for the incumbent government. The jurisdiction with the median of these median voters is most favoured. With identical median voters in jurisdictions, and with re-election requiring less than 50mandate, jurisdictions with higher income inequality get favoured. Results from a survey data (from NCAER) on infrastructure provision in 1669 Indian villages confirm this hypothesis. Ethnic fragmentation does not affect public good provision but political fragmentation does. Finally, villages with the median population are the most favoured for public goods allocation. Sparsely populated and too densely populated villages are relatively neglected.

Suggested Citation

  • Santanu Gupta & Raghbendra Jha, 2006. "Local public goods in a democracy: Theory and evidence from rural India," ASARC Working Papers 2006-06, The Australian National University, Australia South Asia Research Centre.
  • Handle: RePEc:pas:asarcc:2006-06
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://crawford.anu.edu.au/acde/asarc/pdf/papers/2006/WP2006_06.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. repec:cup:apsrev:v:83:y:1989:i:04:p:1181-1206_08 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Dasgupta, Indraneel & Kanbur, Ravi, 2001. "Class, Community, Inequality," Working Papers 127671, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
    3. Timothy Besley & Stephen Coate, 1997. "An Economic Model of Representative Democracy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(1), pages 85-114.
    4. Alberto Alesina & Reza Baqir & William Easterly, 1999. "Public Goods and Ethnic Divisions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(4), pages 1243-1284.
    5. Dixit, Avinash K & Londregan, John, 1994. "The Determinants of Success of Special Interests in Redistributive Politics," CEPR Discussion Papers 1054, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. Seabright, Paul, 1996. "Accountability and decentralisation in government: An incomplete contracts model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 61-89, January.
    7. Santanu Gupta, 2001. "Political Accountability and Fiscal Federalism," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 8(3), pages 263-280, May.
    8. Branko Milanovic, 2003. "The median voter hypothesis, income inequality and income," HEW 0305001, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    median voter; local public good; reservation utility;

    JEL classification:

    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
    • H72 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - State and Local Budget and Expenditures

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pas:asarcc:2006-06. 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: (Raghbendra Jha). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/asanuau.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.