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Cognition, Incentives, and Public Governance:Laboratory Federalism from the Organizational Viewpoint

  • Giampaolo Garzarelli

    (University of Rome 'La Sapienza')

The Second Generation Theory (SGT) of fiscal federalism, which draws upon contemporary economic and industrial organization theory, hitherto focuses only on the negative benefits of public decentralization: the potentially superior ability to align perverse incentives vis-à-vis the centralized governance alternative. The SGT neglects the positive benefits of decentralization (mistake-ridden learning, flexibility, and option discovery), although the limitations of organization theory do not justify such neglect. By likening intergovernmental grants to incomplete contracts, this work shows that the SGT can include the laboratory nature of decentralization.

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File URL: http://128.118.178.162/eps/pe/papers/0512/0512013.pdf
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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Public Economics with number 0512013.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: 29 Dec 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwppe:0512013
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 31
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://128.118.178.162

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  1. Seabright, Paul, 1996. "Accountability and decentralisation in government: An incomplete contracts model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 61-89, January.
  2. Mariano Tommasi & Federico Weinschelbaum, 2007. "Centralization vs. Decentralization: A Principal-Agent Analysis," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 9(2), pages 369-389, 04.
  3. Strumpf, Koleman S, 2002. " Does Government Decentralization Increase Policy Innovation?," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 4(2), pages 207-41.
  4. Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416.
  5. Yingyi Qian & Barry R. Weingast, 1997. "Federalism as a Commitment to Reserving Market Incentives," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(4), pages 83-92, Fall.
  6. Teece, David J., 1980. "Economies of scope and the scope of the enterprise," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 1(3), pages 223-247, September.
  7. Vanberg, Viktor & Buchanan, James M, 1986. "Organization Theory and Fiscal Economics: Society, State, and Public Debt," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 2(2), pages 215-27, Fall.
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