Public Finance

Public Finance : A Normative Theory

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Public Finance remains the premier textbook on the normative theory of government policy, with the third edition propelling into the twenty-first century its examination of what government ought to be doing instead of what it is doing.

The welfare aspects of public economics receive extensively renewed examination in this third edition. With four new chapters and other significant revisions, it presents detailed and comprehensive coverage of theoretical literature, empirical work, environmental issues, social insurance, behavioral economics, and international tax issues. With increased emphasis on the European Union, it is rigid enough for use by PhDs while being accessible to students less well trained in math.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 534 pages
  • 216 x 276 x 27.94mm | 1,770g
  • Academic Press Inc
  • San Diego, United States
  • English
  • 3rd edition
  • 012415834X
  • 9780124158344
  • 1,582,071

Table of contents

Part I: Introduction: The Content and Methodology of Public Sector Theory 1. Introduction to Normative Public Sector Theory 2. A General Equilibrium Model for Public Sector Analysis 3. First-Best and Second-Best Analysis and the Political Economy of Public Sector Economics

Part II: The Theory of Public Expenditures and Taxation-First-Best Analysis 4. The Social Welfare Function in Policy Analysis 5. The Problem of Externalities--An Overview 6. Consumption Externalities 7. Production Externalities 8. Global Warming: An Application of Externality Theory 9. The Theory of Decreasing Cost Production 10. The First-Best Theory of Taxation 11. Applying First-Best Principles of Taxation-What to Tax and How

Part III: The Theory of Public Expenditures and Taxation: Second-Best Analysis 12. Introduction to Second-Best Analysis 13. The Second-Best Theory of Taxation in One-Consumer Economies with Linear Production Technology 14. The Second-Best Theory of Taxation with General Production Technologies and Many Consumers 15. Taxation Under Asymmetric Information 16. The Theory and Measurement of Tax Incidence 17. Expenditure Incidence and Economy-Wide Incidence Studies 18. The Second-Best Theory of Public Expenditures: Overview 19. Transfer Payments and Private Information 20. Social Insurance: Medical Care 21. Social Insurance: Social Security 22. Externalities in a Second-Best Environment 23. Decreasing Costs and the Theory of the Second-Best-The Boiteux Problem 24. General Production Rules in a Second-Best Environment 25. Behavioral Public Sector Economics

Part IV: Fiscal Federalism and International Public Finance 26. Optimal Federalism: Sorting the Functions of Government Within the Fiscal Hierarchy 27. Optimal Federalism: The Sorting of People within the Fiscal Hierarchy 28. The Role of Grants-in-Aid in a Federalist System of Governments 29. International Public Finance
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Review Text

"Richard Tresch's graduate textbook, Public Finance, A Normative Theory , has become the standard reference for graduate courses in public economics. He has now updated the textbook, with the same clear, informative, and illuminating writing, while maintaining the high level of rigor of the previous editions. The revised textbook contains many new and useful insights. I look forward to my continued use of his textbook in my own graduate classes." --James Alm, Tulane University

"Richard Tresch provides a wonderful graduate textbook that is difficult to top in terms of clarity and accessibility. It combines neat mathematical presentation with lots of intuition." --Alfons Weichenrieder, Goethe University Frankfurt

"The ideal graduate treatment of public economic theory. Tresch introduces a general equilibrium model and uses it to solve the classic problems. He then devotes the majority of the book to theoretically examining problems in the second best context, which is the training that students really need to apply theory to real world policy questions." --Stephen Ross, University of Connecticut
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Review quote

"...a detailed introduction to theoretical work on many of the core issues in contemporary public economics. Careful and comprehensive, it will provide readers with an ideal springboard to further research."
James M. Poterba, Mitsui Professor of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, USA

"... outstanding in the breadth of its coverage, in the quality of exposition, and in the balance between theory and policy... especially good at melding newer approaches to the normative study of the public sector with traditional ones."
Robin Boadway, Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada

"I have hoped for years that Richard Tresch would revise his Public Finance text. This volume is well worth the wait. It is comprehensive, up-to-date, and very clearly written. It is a natural reading for a graduate course in public finance. It will also serve as a fine reference for specialists in the field."
Harvey Rosen, Department of Economics, Princeton University, Princeton, USA
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About Richard W. Tresch

Professor Richard W. Tresch earned a bachelor's degree from Williams College in 1965 and a doctorate in economics in 1973 from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he was a teaching assistant prior to his arrival at Boston College. He joined the Boston College faculty in 1969 and throughout his 43-year career has served as Chairman of the Department of Economics, Director of Graduate Studies, and Director of Undergraduate Studies. In 1996, chosen as Massachusetts Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. He was one of 585 national entrants in the foundation's US Professors of the Year Program, which salutes outstanding undergraduate instructors; its award is recognized as one of the most prestigious honors bestowed upon professors. "I am quite humbled by the award, and extremely grateful to the Carnegie Foundation," Tresch said. "The greatest honor, however, is to have been nominated by Boston College. There are so many good teachers here and to be chosen to represent them in the program is something I truly value."A member of the American Economic Association, Tresch served on the board of editors for the American Economic Review, and has contributed to New England Journal of Business and Economics and Public Finance. He is the editor of a four-volume major reference work on public sector economics. The third edition on his textbook, Public Finance: A Normative Theory publishes in November, 2014.
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