Internation Equity and Human Development
TAX LAW AND DEVELOPMENT, Miranda Stewart, Yariv Brauner, eds., Edward Elgar Publishing, 2012
43 Pages Posted: 5 Oct 2011 Last revised: 1 Feb 2012
Date Written: October 4, 2011
In their 1972 essay “Inter-nation Equity,” Richard and Peggy Musgrave added a new dimension to discussions of tax equity by viewing the concept through an international lens. In this chapter written for a collection of essays on tax law and development, I add a new dimension to the Musgraves’ discussion of tax equity by laying a critical lens over their international lens and considering how tax equity might further human development.
In this chapter, I argue that it is time to shed the unbending focus on the economic dimension of people and the tax “exceptionalism” that unduly constrain both the domestic tax equity and internation equity debates. In particular, we must recognize that the internation equity debate is situated within a larger foreign policy and development context. This is important because the larger debate over development is already undergoing a transformation from a narrow focus on economic growth to a wider focus on human development.
To spur a similar transformation in the international tax area, I offer some initial thoughts on how countries might reform their international tax rules to embrace a wider focus on human development. I then describe the advantages of expanding the internation equity debate to address both economic and noneconomic lines of difference among nations in an effort to encourage all countries to advance human development, especially for the most vulnerable among us.
Keywords: tax, inter-nation equity, international, equity, human development
JEL Classification: K33, K34, O20, O40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation