nep-pbe New Economics Papers
on Public Economics
Issue of 2008‒12‒01
seven papers chosen by
Oliver Budzinski
Philipps-University of Marburg

  1. The Provision of a Public Good with a direct Provision Technology and a Large Number of Agents By Behringer, Stefan
  2. Goods and services tax for India. By Rao, R. Kavita
  3. Does Government Regulation Complement Existing Community Efforts to Support Cooperation? Evidence from Field Experiments in Colombia By Lopez, Maria Claudia; Murphy, James J.; Spraggon, John M.; Stranlund, John K.
  4. Creating Sustainable Fiscal Space for Infrastructure: The Case of Tanzania By Richard Hughes; Alejandro Hajdenberg; Teresa Ter-Minassian
  5. Unreported employment and tax evasion in mid-transition : comparing developments and causes in the Baltic States By Jaanika Meriküll; Karsten Staehr
  6. Fiscal Federalism in the UK By Bell, David
  7. International Comparison of Public Sector Performance: The Use of Anchoring Vignettes to adjust Self-Reported Data By Rice, N; Robone, S; Smith, P.C

  1. By: Behringer, Stefan
    Abstract: This paper provides a limit result for the provision of a public good in a mechanism design framework as the number of agents gets large. What distinguishes the public good investigated in this analysis is its direct provision technology which is commonplace in modern information technologies.
    Keywords: Public Goods; Direct Provision; Asymmetric Information; Mechanism Design; Open Source Software.
    JEL: B21 H41 H30
    Date: 2008–09–12
  2. By: Rao, R. Kavita (National Institute of Public Finance and Policy)
    Date: 2008–11
  3. By: Lopez, Maria Claudia; Murphy, James J.; Spraggon, John M.; Stranlund, John K.
    Abstract: In this paper we describe a field experiment conducted among mollusk harvesters in a community on the Pacific Coast of Columbia. The experiment is based on a standard linear public good and consists of two stages. In the first stage we compare the ability of monetary and nonmonetary sanctions among community members to increase contributions to the public good. In the second stage we add a government regulation with either a high or low sanction for noncompliance to community enforcement efforts. The results for the first stage are consistent with other comparisons of monetary and nonmonetary sanctions within groups; both led to higher contributions. The results from the second stage reveal that government regulations always complemented community enforcement efforts. While the subjects tended to reduce their sanctioning efforts under the government regulations, contributions and earnings were significantly higher than without government interventions. In fact, the combination of community and government enforcement efforts generated near-perfect contributions to the public good. However, more research into the combined roles of government intervention and community enforcement efforts is needed because the complementarity we find may be situation-specific.
    Keywords: Field experiments, public goods, government regulation, community enforcement, Environmental Economics and Policy, Institutional and Behavioral Economics, Public Economics, C93, H41, Q2,
    Date: 2008–07
  4. By: Richard Hughes; Alejandro Hajdenberg; Teresa Ter-Minassian
    Abstract: A common dilemma facing governments around the world is how to meet the sizeable fiscal costs of providing and maintaining infrastructure networks. Over the past decade, developed and developing countries have looked to fiscal rules, budgetary reforms, tax policy and administration measures, public-private partnerships and other innovative financial instruments to raise additional finance for infrastructure investment. This paper looks at the range of options for raising the financing to meet Tanzania's infrastructure needs. It begins with a brief survey of the evidence on the relationship between infrastructure, public investment, and economic growth, and then goes on to consider the case for additional infrastructure investment in Tanzania. The second part of the paper looks at five broad options for mobilizing additional resources to meet Tanzania's infrastructure needs: (i) direct private investment and PPPs, (ii) expenditure reprioritization and efficiency, (iii) domestic revenue mobilization, (iv) external grants and concessional financing, and (v) sovereign borrowing on domestic or international credit markets. The paper concludes with some general recommendations on what combination of the above approaches might be suitable for Tanzania.
    Keywords: Working Paper , Tanzania ,
    Date: 2008–11–13
  5. By: Jaanika Meriküll; Karsten Staehr
    Abstract: This paper compares the prevalence and determinants of unreported employment in the three Baltic States in 1998 and 2002 using a hitherto little used dataset. The prevalence of unreported employment varies substantially across the three countries and across the two sampling years. Microeconometric estimations show that firm-related characteristics, such as sectoral activity, firm size and employment trends, are important determinants of unreported employment in all three countries, whereas the impact of individual factors varies across countries and time. It is shown that only 10–30 percent of the changes in unreported employment between 1998 and 2002 can be accounted for by changes in individual characteristics and firm-related factors. Provisional calculations suggest that the net gain for individuals undertaking unreported employment is modest, in particular among individuals who regularly engage in such activities
    Keywords: Unreported employment, informal employment, envelope wages, tax evasion
    JEL: H26 H24 D19
    Date: 2008–11–28
  6. By: Bell, David
    Date: 2008–08
  7. By: Rice, N; Robone, S; Smith, P.C
    Abstract: International comparison of performance has become an influential lever for change in the provision of public services. For health care, patients’ views and opinions are increasingly being recognized as legitimate means for assessing the provision of services, to stimulate quality improvements, and more recently, in evaluating system performance. This has shifted the focus of analyses towards the use of individual-level surveys of performance from the perspective of the user and raises the issue of how to compare appropriately self-reported data across institutional settings and population groups. This represents a major challenge for all public services, the fundamental problem being that comparative evaluation needs to take account of variations in social and cultural expectations and norms when relying on self-reported information. Using data on health systems responsiveness across 18 OECD countries contained within the World Health Survey, this paper outlines the issues that arise in comparative inference that relies on respondent self-reports. The problem of reporting bias is described and illustrated together with potential solutions brought about through the use of anchoring vignettes. The utility of vignettes to aid cross-country analyses and its implications for comparative inference of health system performance are discussed.
    Keywords: Health system performance, Responsiveness, Cross-country comparison, Vignettes.
    Date: 2008–11

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