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A survey of the UK population on public policy


  • Richard S.J. Tol

    () (Department of Economics, University of Sussex,UK, Institute for Environmental Studies and Department of Spatial Economic,UK, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, The Netherlands Tinbergen Institute, Amsterdam, The Netherlands)

  • Peter Dolton

    (Department of Economics, University of Sussex,UK,Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics,UK,CESifo, Munich, Germany,IZA, Bonn, Germany)


An online survey of over 12,000 UK residents was conducted with the aim of understanding: elements of public policy, preferences and knowledge of public expenditure, the provision of public goods, and the intergenerational allocation of resources. Questions were asked about demographics, wealth and income attitudes, time preferences, risk preferences, social value orientation, subjective personal assessments of life expectancy, perceptions of government spending, and public policies on health, education, pensions and climate change. This paper presents a simple description of the summary statistics from the survey. It does not, as yet, provides substantive analysis of the data.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard S.J. Tol & Peter Dolton, 2016. "A survey of the UK population on public policy," Working Paper Series 08416, Department of Economics, University of Sussex Business School.
  • Handle: RePEc:sus:susewp:08416

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Corneo, Giacomo & Gruner, Hans Peter, 2002. "Individual preferences for political redistribution," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 83-107, January.
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    6. Abram Bergson, 1954. "On the Concept of Social Welfare," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 68(2), pages 233-252.
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    9. Shane Frederick, 2005. "Cognitive Reflection and Decision Making," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(4), pages 25-42, Fall.
    10. Luke Sibieta, 2015. "School Spending in England 2010–15," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 36, pages 283-302, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Monica Novackova & Richard S.J. Tol, 2018. "Climate Change Awareness and Willingness to Pay for its Mitigation: Evidence from the UK," Working Paper Series 0318, Department of Economics, University of Sussex Business School.
    2. Lahnaoui, Amin & Wulf, Christina & Heinrichs, Heidi & Dalmazzone, Didier, 2018. "Optimizing hydrogen transportation system for mobility by minimizing the cost of transportation via compressed gas truck in North Rhine-Westphalia," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 223(C), pages 317-328.
    3. Symeon Mavridis, 2018. "Greece’s Economic and Social Transformation 2008–2017," Social Sciences, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 7(1), pages 1-14, January.
    4. Peter Dolton & Richard S.J. Tol, 2019. "Correlates of Social Value Orientation: Evidence from a Large Sample of the UK Population," Working Paper Series 0119, Department of Economics, University of Sussex Business School.
    5. Peter Dolton & Mehmet Kutluay & Richard S.J. Tol, 2019. "Attitudes Towards Public Health Spending: The Case of the National Health Service in the United Kingdom," Working Paper Series 0719, Department of Economics, University of Sussex Business School.
    6. Iparraguirre, Jose Luis, 2020. "Reductions in local government spending on community-based social care and unmet social care needs of older people in England," The Journal of the Economics of Ageing, Elsevier, vol. 17(C).
    7. Trotta, Gianluca, 2018. "The determinants of energy efficient retrofit investments in the English residential sector," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 120(C), pages 175-182.

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    More about this item


    Survey; United Kingdom; discount rate; risk aversion; social value orientation; health; education; pensions; climate change; public policy;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D10 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - General
    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers
    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General
    • D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy
    • J32 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Nonwage Labor Costs and Benefits; Retirement Plans; Private Pensions
    • H51 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Health
    • H52 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Education
    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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