2022/01: Financing public education when altruistic agents have retirement concerns
We study, theoretically and empirically, the link between voters’ support for public education and pensions when agents are free to choose between public and private education. We show that the (inter-generational) redistributive component in the retirement system creates a link between pensions and education. Specifically, the current investment in education increases future productivity and, hence, future tax proceeds. This channel applies for households that chose private education too. Consequently, the support for publicly financed education grows together with the generosity and degree of redistribution of the retirement system. The empirical analysis uses repeated cross-country surveys to confirm the model predictions.