The Allocation of Competencies in an International Union: A Positive Analysis

47 Pages Posted: 4 Jun 2003

See all articles by Michele Ruta

Michele Ruta

Economic Research Division, WTO; Columbia Business School - Economics Department; International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Date Written: April 2003

Abstract

This paper presents a positive theory of centralization of political decisions in an international union. My central claim is that lobbies play a role in determining the assignment of competencies to the union because their power of influence can increase or decrease under centralization. I show that in this setting a misallocation of prerogatives between the international union and national governments can be an outcome, both leading to excessive decentralization and/or non necessary centralization. This result reconciles a partial inconsistency that recent studies pointed out between the allocation of prerogatives in the EU and normative criteria, as laid out in the theoretical literature.

Keywords: Political economy, international unions, fiscal federalism, lobbying

JEL Classification: F02, D72, H77, P16

Suggested Citation

Ruta, Michele, The Allocation of Competencies in an International Union: A Positive Analysis (April 2003). ECB Working Paper No. 220. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=411583

Michele Ruta (Contact Author)

Economic Research Division, WTO ( email )

Rue de Lausanne 154
CH-1211 Geneva
Switzerland

HOME PAGE: http://www.iue.it/Personal/Fellows/MicheleRuta/Welcome.htm

Columbia Business School - Economics Department ( email )

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New York, NY 10027
United States

International Monetary Fund (IMF) ( email )

700 19th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20431
United States

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