• UCL Twitter account
  • UCL YouTube channel
  • UCL Facebook page
  • UCL SoundCloud channel
  • UCL iTunes store

Information for Staff


Select dates to view past and future events

12:00 - 13:45 19 February 2014

A Positive Theory of Tax Reform


IFS Basement | Institute for Fiscal Studies (link Map)
7 Ridgmount Street | London | WC1E 7AE | United Kingdom

Open to: Academic | Student
Ticketing: Open

Speaker information

Ethan Ilzetzki, LSE

The political impediments to tax reform and the political forces allowing its success are studied in a model where the tax base and the tax rate are policy instruments. The model predicts that large changes in the tax code are politically feasible even at times when marginal reforms would be rejected. This contrasts with a large literature that suggests that larger reforms face greater political difficulties. Politically feasible tax reform will tend to occur when revenue needs are large, but will nonetheless involve reductions in marginal tax rates. Adopting tax reform may involve large shifts in political platforms. The recent history of tax reform in the US and other industrialized countries is discussed and shown to be in line with the model's predictions.


Institute for Fiscal Studies
020 7291 4800 | -


Seminar paper