The Theory of Taxation and Public Economics presents a unified conceptual framework for analyzing taxation–the first to be systematically developed in several decades. Building on the work of James Mirrlees, Anthony Atkinson and Joseph Stiglitz, Lpuis Kaplow steps back from particular lines of inquiry to consider the field as a whole, including the relationships among different fiscal instruments. Rather than merely providing a textbook aynthesis, this book contains new analysis that generates novel results, including some that overturn long-standing conventionall wisdom.
Kaplow introduces a framework that makes it possible to rigorously examine both distributive and distortionary effects of particular policies despite their complex interactions with others. By applying this common methodology to disparate subjects, The Theory of Taxation and Public Economics produces significant cross-fertilization and yields solutions to previously intractable problems. This fresh approach should change thinking, research, and teaching for decades
To do so, various reforms–ranging from commodity or estate and gift taxation to regulation and public goods provision–are combined with a distributively offsetting adjustment to the income tax. The resulting distribution-neutral reform package holds much constant while leaving in play the distinctive effects of the policy instrument under consideration. By applying this common methodology to disparate subjects,