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Public Efficiency and Constitutional Constraints: a Contribution Towards an Extended Leviathan Model

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The paper analyses the relationship among public efficiency, exploitation of private individuals by the government and the role of constitutional constraints. First, it contains an extensive review of the Leviathan model based on Inman's formalisation of Brennan and Buchanan theory. Secondly, an extension of such a model is proposed, in which public agents are separated into politicians and bureaucrats. In so doing a ‘new’ efficiency-equity trade-off arises, namely, the achievement of Pareto-efficiency through constitutional constraints is obtained at a cost of a possible exploitation of private individuals, while the non-exploitation allocation is coupled with a possible Pareto-inefficiency.
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Keywords: Constitutional Economics; Public Choice; efficiency-equity trade-off; leviathan; public efficiency

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Siena, P.zza San Francesco 8, 53100 Siena - Italy

Publication date: January 1998

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