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Charity as income redistribution: a model with optimal taxation, status, and social stigma
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Economics.
Göteborgs universitet.
University of Graz, Österrike.
2019 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In light of the increasing inequality in many countries, this paper analyzes redistributive charitable giving from the rich to the poor in a model of optimal nonlinear income taxation. Our framework integrates (i) public and private redistribution, (ii) the warm glow of giving and stigma of receiving charitable donations, and (iii) status concerns emanating from social comparisons with respect to charitable donations and private consumption. Whether charity should be taxed or supported largely depends on the relative strengths of the warm glow of giving and the stigma of receiving charity, respectively, and on the positional externalities caused by charitable donations. In addition, imposing stigma on the mimicker (which relaxes the self-selection constraint) strengthens the case for subsidizing charity. We also consider a case where the government is unable to target the charitable giving through a direct tax instrument, and we examine how the optimal marginal income tax structure should be adjusted in response to charitable giving. Numerical simulations demonstrate that the quantitative effects of the aforementioned mechanisms can be substantial.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. , p. 50
Series
Umeå economic studies, ISSN 0348-1018 ; 961
Keywords [en]
conspicuous consumption, conspicuous charitable giving, social status, optimal income taxation, warm glow, stigma
National Category
Economics
Research subject
Economics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-164198OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-164198DiVA, id: diva2:1361485
Funder
Swedish Research CouncilAvailable from: 2019-10-16 Created: 2019-10-16 Last updated: 2019-10-21Bibliographically approved

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Aronsson, Thomas

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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  • de-DE
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  • en-US
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  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
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  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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  • text
  • asciidoc
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