Conference Agenda

Overview and details of the sessions of this online conference.

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Please note that all times are shown in the time zone of the conference. The current conference time is: 5th Dec 2021, 06:14:48pm GMT

Session Overview
A07: Behavioral Public Economics
Wednesday, 18/Aug/2021:
10:45am - 12:15pm

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10:45am - 11:07am

Can Moral Reminders Curb Corruption? Evidence from an Online Classroom Experiment

Corinna Claus1, Ekkehard Koehler2, Tim Krieger1

1University of Freiburg, Germany; 2Walter Eucken Institute

Using an incentivized online classroom experiment, we assess the effectiveness of deontological vs. consequentialist moral reminders. Participants were told to be the responsible public servant for acquiring Covid-19 vaccine, providing them with the opportunity to generate some extra private income by accepting a bribe. Our findings indicate that a deontological moral reminder ("corruption is immoral!") leads to a significant reduction of accepting bribes. A consequentialist moral reminder, pointing out that bribes are costly to taxpayers, has no significant effect. Our experiment was conducted before and after the announcement of BionTech/Pfizer on November 9, 2020 that they will be able to provide an effective Covid-19 vaccine. This announcement correlates with a higher level of bribe-taking.

Claus-Can Moral Reminders Curb Corruption Evidence from an Online Classroom Experiment-427.pdf

11:07am - 11:30am

Is Meat Too Cheap? Towards Optimal Meat Taxation

Franziska Funke1, Linus Mattauch2, Inge van den Bijgaart3, Charles Godfray2, Cameron Hepburn2, David Klenert4, Marco Springmann2, Nicolas Treich5

1Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and TU Berlin; 2University of Oxford; 3University of Gothenburg; 4Joint Research Centre of the European Commission; 5Université Toulouse Capitole, Toulouse School of Economics

Advances in environmental science and economics permit us to conclude that meat is significantly underpriced. While livestock plays a significant role in climate change and negatively impacts global nitrogen cycles and ecosystem biodiversity, economically efficient policies for regulating meat production and consumption are under-researched. In the absence of first-best policy instruments for the livestock sector, meat taxes can address multiple environmental externalities simultaneously, while improving diet-related public health. We review the empirical basis for the ‘social costs of meat’ and study several elements from public, behavioural and welfare economics, which could motivate regulatory efforts to tax meat in high-income countries: (i) multiple environmental externalities, (ii) adverse effects on one’s own health, (iii) animal welfare, (iv) learning curves for 'alternative protein technologies', and (v) distributional effects.

Funke-Is Meat Too Cheap Towards Optimal Meat Taxation-485.pdf

11:30am - 11:52am

The Words that Keep People Apart. Official Language, Accountability and Fiscal Capacity

Adelaide Baronchelli1, Alessandra Foresta2, Roberto Ricciuti1

1University of Verona, Italy; 2University of York

This paper empirically evaluates the impact of accountability on fiscal capacity. We maintain that if the average citizen speaks a language different from the central government and the elite, she will find it difficult/impossible to hold the government to account. As a result, this will negatively affect fiscal capacity. We adopt an instrumental variable approach using, as an instrument, the measure of how far the official language differs from ordinary language. The first stage results suggest that this instrument is strong and reliable and is negatively correlated with our measure of accountability in line with the hypothesis. The results in the second stage support our hypothesis. The results are robust to plausible exogeneity tests and different specifications.

Baronchelli-The Words that Keep People Apart Official Language, Accountability and Fiscal Capacity-241.pdf

11:52am - 12:15pm

Fear and Loathing in Times of Distress: Causal Impact of Social and Economic Insecurity on Anti-Immigration Sentiment

Willem Sas1,6, Gianmarco Daniele2,3, Francesco Passarelli2,4, Andrea Martinangeli5, Lisa Windsteiger5

1University of Stirling; 2Bocconi University; 3University of Turin; 4University of Milan; 5Max Planck Institute for Tax Law and Public Finance; 6KU Leuven

The causal nexus between socio-economic stressors and anti-immigration sentiments remains unclear despite increasing evidence over their correlation. We exploit the social and economic disruptions brought about by the epidemic outbreak in March 2020 to randomly provide survey respondents with, at the time of the online survey, pessimistic information about the economic and health consequences of the epidemic. Both economic and social stressors causally induce upsurges in anti-immigration sentiment and the perception of being overtaxed. However, radicalised attitudes are accompanied by political radicalisation only when the negative economic consequences of the epidemic are highlighted. Our theoretical model unpacks our findings alongside the health- and economic dimensions of the crisis. The probabilities of contagion and injury are proposed as the main channels driving our results, which is also confirmed by our survey experiment.

Sas-Fear and Loathing in Times of Distress-318.pdf

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