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Declared vs. revealed yardstick competition:Local government efficiency in Norway

This paper investigates whether the production efficiency of Norwegian local governments exhibits a spatial pattern that is compatible with the hy­pothesis of yardstick competition. In order to check whether yardstick com­petition is really responsible far the observed spatial pattern, and to rule out alternative theoretical explanations, the paper exploits unique information from a survey on Norwegian local governments, where local public officials are explicitly asked whether they compare their own performances in the provision of public services to those of other governments (benchmarking). Merging the latter information - "declared" yardstick competition - with the observed interdependence in local efficiency measures - "revealed" yardstick competition - the paper provides evidence that comparative performance evaluation generates spatial auto-correlation in local efficiency indicators.

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Paper provided by University of Turin in its series Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers with number 200605.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:uto:dipeco:200605
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  2. Bordignon, Massimo & Cerniglia, Floriana & Revelli, Federico, 2004. "Yardstick competition in intergovernmental relationships: theory and empirical predictions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 325-333, June.
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  4. Ashworth, John & Heyndels, Bruno, 1997. "Politicians' preferences on local tax rates: An empirical analysis," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 479-502, September.
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  8. DE BORGER, Bruno & KERSTENS, K. & MOESEN, Wim & VANNESTE, Jacques, 1992. "Explaining differences in productive efficiency: An application to Belgian municipalities," SESO Working Papers 1992003, University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics.
  9. Strom, Bjarne, 1995. "Envy, Fairness and Political Influence in Local Government Wage Determination: Evidence from Norway," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 62(247), pages 389-409, August.
  10. Jørn Rattsø & Rune J. Sørensen, 2004. "Public Employees as Swing Voters: Empirical Evidence on Opposition to Public Reform," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 119(3_4), pages 281-310, 06.
  11. Revelli, Federico, 2006. "Performance rating and yardstick competition in social service provision," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(3), pages 459-475, February.
  12. Helen F. Ladd, 1992. "Mimicking of Local Tax Burdens Among Neighboring Counties," Public Finance Review, SAGE Publishing, vol. 20(4), pages 450-467, October.
  13. Sole Olle, Albert, 2003. "Electoral accountability and tax mimicking: the effects of electoral margins, coalition government, and ideology," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 685-713, November.
  14. Bivand, Roger & Szymanski, Stefan, 2000. "Modelling the spatial impact of the introduction of Compulsory Competitive Tendering," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 203-219, March.
  15. Nouriel Roubini & Jeffrey Sachs, 1989. "Government Spending and Budget Deficits in the Industrial Economies," NBER Working Papers 2919, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. repec:rus:hseeco:122160 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Babcock, Linda & Engberg, John & Greenbaum, Robert, 2005. "Wage spillovers in public sector contract negotiations: the importance of social comparisons," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 395-416, July.
  18. Geys, Benny, 2006. "Looking across borders: a test of spatial policy interdependence using local government efficiency ratings
    [Der Blick über die Grenze: Untersuchung von räumlichen Wechselbeziehungen in der Kommunal
    ," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance SP II 2006-03, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  19. Case, Anne C. & Rosen, Harvey S. & Hines, James Jr., 1993. "Budget spillovers and fiscal policy interdependence : Evidence from the states," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 285-307, October.
  20. Bivand, Roger & Szymanski, Stefan, 1997. "Spatial dependence through local yardstick competition:: theory and testing," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 257-265, August.
  21. Dahlberg, Matz & Mörk, Eva & Ågren, Hanna, 2004. "Do Politicians’ Preferences Correspond to those of the Voters? An Investigation of Political Representation," Working Paper Series 2004:2, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  22. Jorid Kalseth & Jørn Rattsø, 1998. "Political Control of Administrative Spending: The Case of Local Governments in Norway," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(1), pages 63-83, 03.
  23. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 1992. "Incumbent Behavior: Vote Seeking, Tax Setting and Yardstick Competition," NBER Working Papers 4041, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Fried, Harold O. & Lovell, C. A. Knox & Schmidt, Shelton S. (ed.), 1993. "The Measurement of Productive Efficiency: Techniques and Applications," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195072181, December.
  25. Anselin, Luc & Bera, Anil K. & Florax, Raymond & Yoon, Mann J., 1996. "Simple diagnostic tests for spatial dependence," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 77-104, February.
  26. Salmon, Pierre, 1987. "Decentralisation as an Incentive Scheme," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(2), pages 24-43, Summer.
  27. Heyndels, Bruno & Vuchelen, Jef, 1998. "Tax Mimicking Among Belgian Municipalities," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 51(n. 1), pages 89-101, March.
  28. Aronsson, Thomas & Blomquist, Soren & Sacklen, Hans, 1999. "Identifying Interdependent Behaviour in an Empirical Model of Labour Supply," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(6), pages 607-26, Nov.-Dec..
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