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Tullock Challenges: happiness, revolutions and democracy


  • Bruno S. Frey


Gordon Tullock has been one of the most important founders and contributors to Public Choice. Two innovations are typical “Tullock Challenges”. The first relates to method: the measurement of subjective well-being, or happiness. The second relates to digital social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, or to some extent Google. Both innovations lead to strong incentives by the governments to manipulate the policy consequences. In general “What is important, will be manipulated by the government”. To restrain government manipulation one has to turn to Constitutional Economics and increase the possibilities for direct popular participation and federalism, or introduce random mechanisms.

Suggested Citation

  • Bruno S. Frey, 2011. "Tullock Challenges: happiness, revolutions and democracy," ECON - Working Papers 015, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.
  • Handle: RePEc:zur:econwp:015

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Benno Torgler & Bruno Frey, 2013. "Politicians: be killed or survive," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 156(1), pages 357-386, July.
    2. Bruno S. Frey, 2011. "Subjective Well-Being, Politics and Political Economy," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 147(IV), pages 397-415, December.
    3. Helena Marques & Gabriel Pino & J.D. Tena, 2013. "Do happiness indexes truly reveal happiness? Measuring happiness using revealed preferences from migration flows," DEA Working Papers 59, Universitat de les Illes Balears, Departament d'Economía Aplicada.
    4. Schlüter, Achim & Vollan, Björn, 2015. "Flowers and an honour box: Evidence on framing effects," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 186-199.
    5. Libman, Alexander, 2012. "Перераспределительные Конфликты И Факторы Культуры В Новой Политической Экономии
      [Redistributive Conflicts and Culture in the New Political Economy]
      ," MPRA Paper 48192, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Jeroen Boelhouwer & Cretien Campen, 2013. "Steering Towards Happiness in The Netherlands," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 114(1), pages 59-72, October.

    More about this item


    Happiness; social networks; constitutional economics; random mechanisms; public choice;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • H10 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - General
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
    • D02 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Institutions: Design, Formation, Operations, and Impact

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