Development Policy as Public Finance

Paperback | April 2, 2004

byClive Bell

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This book is written out of a conviction that development economics needs to draw more heavily and systematically on recent advances in knowledge made in public economics, especially where the formulation and analysis of development policy are concerned. The central questions - how to raiseand spend revenues well, in the sense of promoting development - are surely normative; but whether something is done 'well' must also be judged in relation to what is actually feasible. With unrestricted lump-sum transfers ruled out in practice, the design of policy is inherently concerned withconsiderations of the second-best. This awkward fact besets the analysis of interventions in all areas of economic activity, from international trade to small-scale finance.Debates over whether and how to promote particular sectors or activities at the expense of others, when viewed from this perspective, draw attention away from the humdrum, but decidedly more important goal of raising revenue efficiently and with due regard for equity. This stricture applies tointernational trade, industry, and agriculture, as well as to the familiar choice among different forms of taxes, seigniorage, and debt. At the same time, all proposals to spend public funds, introduce or change regulations, and reform policy should be subjected to a rigorous and uniform system ofappraisal, especially when there is a substantial premium on public funds. The methods of social cost-benefit analysis, based on shadow prices, provide just the apparatus that is needed for this purpose. This apparatus and its many applications are developed at length, in the hope of promoting itsuse as a matter of course.Development Policy as Public Finance will be of interest to graduate students, academics, and advanced undergraduates in economics, development studies, and political science; government agencies and NGOs.

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This book is written out of a conviction that development economics needs to draw more heavily and systematically on recent advances in knowledge made in public economics, especially where the formulation and analysis of development policy are concerned. The central questions - how to raiseand spend revenues well, in the sense of promo...

Clive Bell is Professor of Economics at Heidelberg University. Having obtained his D.Phil. from the University of Sussex in 1976, he has since held positions at the World Bank (1974-85), Johns Hopkins University (1985-6), Vanderbilt University (1986-95), and Regensburg University (1991-4).

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:486 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.99 inPublished:April 2, 2004Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198773676

ISBN - 13:9780198773672

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Table of Contents

1. International Trade: Theory2. International Trade: Practice3. International Trade: Liberalization4. Taxation5. Tax Reform6. Seigniorage and Debt7. Other Dynamic Pitfalls8. An Introduction to Social-Cost Benefit Analysis9. Shadow Prices: A General Equilibrium Approach10. Time: The Social Discount Rate11. Space: Transportation Costs12. Risk and Uncertainty13. Large Projects14. Land Reform and Tenancy15. Small-Scale CreditAppendix. A Primer in Duality Theory