This is the first of two courses in the graduate public economics sequence. This one-semester course covers basic issues in the optimal design of tax and social insurance policies, with emphasis on combining theoretical models with empirical evidence. Topics include efficiency costs and incidence of taxation, income taxation, transfer and welfare programs, public goods and externalities, optimal social insurance (excluding social security), welfare analysis in behavioral models, corporate taxation, and education policy.
The slides and reading list are divided into eight parts:
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We would like to thank Jon Gruber, Day Manoli, Emmanuel Saez, and many other colleagues whose comments and lecture notes contributed to the development of these slides. Please contact Gregory Bruich (gbruich 'at' fas.harvard.edu) or Raj Chetty (chetty 'at' stanford.edu) if you have any questions or suggestions.