The Role of Concern for Self in Redistribution Preferences and Support for the Welfare State
40 Pages Posted: 24 Jun 2020
Date Written: May 31, 2020
Preferences for redistribution involve concerns for the welfare of oneself and for income equality in society. Using an anchoring-vignette format, this cross-national survey finds that more concern for the welfare of oneself rather than for others leads to support for redistribution. In the Swedish, social democratic regime, protection for oneself is important for a public consensus for redistribution. In the United Kingdom and the United States, respondents are less concerned with self-protection — especially in the provision of benefits and services — which results in less support in liberal regimes. The Japanese respondents are concerned about the welfare of oneself, but their subjective underestimation of income levels prevents them from agreeing on the details of redistribution policies. Concerns for the welfare of oneself are confirmed to be important. Preferences for taxes are distinct from those for welfare services and benefits, but both are closely related to support for redistribution.
Keywords: redistribution, tax, welfare, welfare regime, equality, anchoring-vignettes
JEL Classification: H26, H53, H60
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation