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The Effects of Temptation on the Optimal Provision of Education

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  • Soohyung Lee

    () (Stanford University)

Abstract

This paper provides a framework for analyzing optimal government transfers of education when individuals are tempted to underinvest in education. The government may devise a transfer using a combination of free compulsory education, vouchers and price subsidies. I show that government intervention is needed if there is no deadweight loss associated with taxation. If there is a loss from taxation, government intervention is needed only if the level of temptation is sufficiently high. For high levels of temptation, free compulsory education or vouchers are optimal, whereas price subsidies may be optimal for intermediate levels of temptation.

Suggested Citation

  • Soohyung Lee, 2005. "The Effects of Temptation on the Optimal Provision of Education," Discussion Papers 05-030, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:sip:dpaper:05-030
    as

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    File URL: http://www-siepr.stanford.edu/repec/sip/05-030.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Faruk Gul & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 2004. "Self-Control and the Theory of Consumption," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(1), pages 119-158, January.
    2. David Laibson, 1997. "Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(2), pages 443-478.
    3. Hanushek, Eric A. & Leung, Charles Ka Yui & Yilmaz, Kuzey, 2003. "Redistribution through education and other transfer mechanisms," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(8), pages 1719-1750, November.
    4. Per Krusell & Burhanettin Kuruşçu & Anthony A. Smith Jr., 2010. "Temptation and Taxation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 78(6), pages 2063-2084, November.
    5. Stephen V. Cameron & James J. Heckman, 1998. "Life Cycle Schooling and Dynamic Selection Bias: Models and Evidence for Five Cohorts of American Males," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(2), pages 262-333, April.
    6. Faruk Gul & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 2004. "Self Control, Revealed Preferences and Consumption Choice," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 7(2), pages 243-264, April.
    7. Faruk Gul & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 2001. "Temptation and Self-Control," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(6), pages 1403-1435, November.
    8. Shane Frederick & George Loewenstein & Ted O'Donoghue, 2002. "Time Discounting and Time Preference: A Critical Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(2), pages 351-401, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Temptation; Education Policy; Hyperbolic Discounting; Self-Control;

    JEL classification:

    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General
    • H4 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods
    • H52 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Education
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy

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