Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11851/7392
Title: Religion, income inequality, and the size of the government
Authors: Elgin, Ceyhun
Göksel, Türkmen
Gürdal, Mehmet Y.
Orman, Cüneyt
Keywords: Religion
Voluntary donations
Taxation
Redistribution
Income inequality
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: Elsevier
Abstract: Recent empirical research has demonstrated that countries with higher levels of religiosity are characterized by greater income inequality. We argue that this is due to the lower level of government services demanded in more religious countries. Religion motivates individuals to engage in charitable giving and this leads them to prefer making their contributions privately and voluntarily rather than through the state. To the extent that citizen preferences are reflected in policy outcomes, religiosity results in lower levels of taxes and hence lower levels of spending on both public goods and redistribution. Since measures of income typically do not fully take into account private transfers received, this increases measured income inequality. We formalize these ideas in a general equilibrium political economy model and also show that the implications of our model are supported by cross-country data. (c) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
URI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.econmod.2012.08.017
https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11851/7392
ISSN: 0264-9993
1873-6122
Appears in Collections:İktisat Bölümü / Department of Economics
Scopus İndeksli Yayınlar Koleksiyonu / Scopus Indexed Publications Collection
WoS İndeksli Yayınlar Koleksiyonu / WoS Indexed Publications Collection

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