Reciprocity and willingness to pay taxes: evidence from a survey experiment in Latin America
We provide the first experimental attempt at measuring reciprocity in tax collection in developing countries, where enforcement institutions are weak, and where tax rates and in general tax observance is lower. In a household survey carried out in 17 Latin American cities, we randomly provide respondents with positively or negatively information on the local Government's administration; this information significantly altered perceptions on the quality of the local government in two cities, and we find that in Rio de Janeiro -where a relative high degree of tax autonomy allows citizens to make a clear link between taxes and the provision of public services- people's perception on the quality of the local government can have sizable effects on their willingness to pay taxes.
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