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Optimal Provision of Public Goods with Altruistic Individuals


  • Eduardo Ley

    (Resources for the Future)


We study the optimal provision of public goods in the context of a special class of altruistically linked utility functions. We show that the usual Samuelson condition holds as if the utility functions were independent.

Suggested Citation

  • Eduardo Ley, 1996. "Optimal Provision of Public Goods with Altruistic Individuals," Public Economics 9607001, EconWPA, revised 06 Oct 2001.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwppe:9607001
    Note: Type of Document - Postcript; prepared on MacOS 7.5, Textures 1.7, LW 8.1; to print on PostScript; pages: 5. Forthcoming Economics Letters.

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Becker, Gary S, 1974. "A Theory of Social Interactions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(6), pages 1063-1093, Nov.-Dec..
    2. Abel, Andrew B & Bernheim, B Douglas, 1991. "Fiscal Policy with Impure Intergenerational Altruism," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(6), pages 1687-1711, November.
    3. Barro, Robert J, 1974. "Are Government Bonds Net Wealth?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(6), pages 1095-1117, Nov.-Dec..
    4. Bergstrom, Theodore C. & Cornes, Richard C., 1981. "Gorman and Musgrave are dual : An Antipodean theorem on public goods," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 371-378.
    5. Bergstrom, Theodore C, 1999. " Systems of Benevolent Utility Functions," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 1(1), pages 71-100.
    6. Becker, Gary S, 1976. "Altruism, Egoism, and Genetic Fitness: Economics and Sociobiology," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 817-826, September.
    7. Bernheim, B Douglas & Stark, Oded, 1988. "Altruism within the Family Reconsidered: Do Nice Guys Finish Last?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(5), pages 1034-1045, December.
    8. Bergstrom, Ted, 1989. "Love and Spaghetti, the Opportunity Cost of Virtue," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(2), pages 165-173, Spring.
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    Cited by:

    1. Eckerstorfer, Paul & Wendner, Ronald, 2013. "Asymmetric and non-atmospheric consumption externalities, and efficient consumption taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 42-56.
    2. Bulat Sanditov & Saurabh Arora, 2016. "Social network and private provision of public goods," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 26(1), pages 195-218, March.
    3. Non, Arjan, 2012. "Gift-exchange, incentives, and heterogeneous workers," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 319-336.
    4. Bulat Sanditov & Saurabh Arora, 2015. "Social network and private provision of public goods," SPRU Working Paper Series 2015-35, SPRU - Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex.

    More about this item


    Samuelson condition; Pareto efficiency;

    JEL classification:

    • D6 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics
    • H0 - Public Economics - - General
    • H4 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods


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