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Emerging Lessons from Half a Century of Fiscal Federalism in Switzerland

Summary

Over the last six years, researchers collaborating through the SNF Sinergia Project have collected data on fiscal federalism in Switzerland over more than half a century. The analysis of these new data in a range of projects has generated new and robust evidence on fiscal interdependencies among local governments and on behavioral responses of households facing local differences This article presents some of the data collected and reports on nine examples of associated research projects.

References

  1. Brülhart, Marius, Sam Bucovetsky, and Kurt Schmidheiny (2015), “Taxes in Cities.” In: G. Duranton, J.V. Henderson and W. Strange, Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, Vol. 5B, pp. 1123–119

  2. Brülhart, Marius, Jonathan Gruber, Matthias Krapf, and Kurt Schmidheiny (2017), “The Elasticity of Taxable Wealth: Evidence from Switzerland”, Mimeo, University of Basel and University of Lausann

  3. Brülhart, Marius, and Mario Jametti (2016), “Does Tax Competition Tame the Leviathan?” Mimeo, University of Lausanne.

  4. Brülhart, Marius, and Raphaël Parchet (2014), “Alleged Tax Competition: The Mysterious Death of Bequest Taxes in Switzerland”, Journal of Public Economics, 111, pp. 63–78.

  5. Bütler, Monika, and Alma Ramsden (2017), “How Taxes Impact the Choice between an Annuity and the Lump Sum at Retirement”, University of St. Gallen Discussion Paper, 2017-01.

  6. Eugster, Beatrix, and Raphaël Parchet (2013). “Culture and Taxes. Towards Identifying Tax Competition”, University of St Gallen Discussion Paper 2013-39.

  7. Funk, Patricia, and Christina Gathmann (2013), “How do Electoral Systems Affect Fiscal Policy? Evidence from Canton Parliaments, 1890–2000”, Journal of the European Economic Association, 11(5), pp. 1178–1203.

  8. Parchet, Raphaël (2014), “Are local tax rates strategic complements or strategic substitutes?” IdEP Economic Papers 2014/07.

  9. Roller, Marcus, and Kurt Schmidheiny (2016), “Effective Tax Rates and Effective Progressivity in a Fiscally Decentralized Country”, CEPR Discussion Paper 11152.

  10. Schmidheiny, Kurt, and Michaela Slotwinski (2015), “Behavioral Responses to Local Tax Rates: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from a Foreigners Tax Scheme in Switzerland”, CEPR Discussion Paper 10833.

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Author information

Correspondence to Kurt Schmidheiny.

Additional information

This text is based on the keynote address I gave on June 10, 2016 at the annual congress of the Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES) in Lugano. A video recording of the keynote lecture is available online at https://youtu.be/XhvmMm8bLCA. I thank Marius Brü, Monika Bütler, Patricia Funk, Mario Jametti, Raphaël Parchet, Marcus Roller, Anja Roth and Michaela Slotwinski for their help in preparing both keynote lecture and this text.

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