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Gersbach, Hans

Works: 286 works in 967 publications in 2 languages and 3,689 library holdings
Roles: Author, Thesis advisor, dgs, Honoree
Publication Timeline
Publications about Hans Gersbach
Publications by Hans Gersbach
Publications by Hans Gersbach, published posthumously.
Most widely held works by Hans Gersbach
Designing democracy : ideas for better rules by Hans Gersbach( Book )
20 editions published between 2004 and 2010 in English and German and held by 207 libraries worldwide
This book presents a number of ideas for drawing up new rules to improve the functioning of democracies. The first part examines ways of combining incentive contracts with democratic elections. The second part presents new rules for decision-making, agendas and agenda settings
Self-financing environmental mechanisms by Joerg Breitscheidel( Book )
5 editions published in 2005 in English and held by 98 libraries worldwide
We explore the design of self-financing tax/subsidy mechanisms to solve hold-up problems in environmental regulation. Under Cournot competition, announcing the subsidy rate seems to be preferable to announcing the tax rate. Moreover, for constant marginal damage the hold-up problem can always be solved by setting subsidies. Under Bertrand competition, only announcing the tax rate can induce at least one firm to invest. We suggest that feebate systems in the automotive sector should be designed as self-financing tax/subsidy mechanisms
Economic Growth, Education, And AIDS In Kenya A Long-Run Analysis by Clive Bell( file )
10 editions published between 2006 and 2012 in English and Undetermined and held by 68 libraries worldwide
The AIDS epidemic threatens Kenya with a long wave of premature adult mortality, and thus with an enduring setback to the formation of human capital and economic growth. To investigate this possibility, the authors develop a model with three overlapping generations, calibrate it to the demographic and economic series from 1950 until 1990, and then perform simulations for the period ending in 2050 under alternative assumptions about demographic developments, including the counterfactual in which there is no epidemic. Although AIDS does not bring about a catastrophic economic collapse, it does cause large economic costs-and many deaths. Programs that subsidize post-primary education and combat the epidemic are both socially profitable-the latter strikingly so, due to its indirect effects on the expected returns to education-and a combination of the two interventions profits from a modest long-run synergy effect
Die Informationseffizienz in Mehrheitsentscheidungen by Hans Gersbach( Book )
8 editions published between 1990 and 1991 in German and Undetermined and held by 66 libraries worldwide
Financial intermediation and the creation of macroeconomic risks by Hans Gersbach( Book )
10 editions published between 1998 and 2002 in English and held by 42 libraries worldwide
We examine financial intermediation when banks can offer deposit or loan contracts contingent on macroeconomic shocks. We show that the risk allocation is efficient if there is no workout of banking crises. In this case, banks will shift part of the risk to depositors. In contrast, under a workout of banking crises, depositors receive non-contingent contracts with high interest rates while enterpreneurs obtain loan contracts that demand a high repayment in good times and little in bad times. As a result, the present generation overinvests and banks create large macroeconomic risks for future generations, even if the underlying risk is small or zero. This provides a new justification for capital requirements
The dynamics of deposit insurance and the consumption trap by Hans Gersbach( Book )
11 editions published in 2001 in English and held by 36 libraries worldwide
We investigate a banking system subject to repeated macroeconomic shocks and show that without deposit rate control, the banking system collapses with certainty. Any initial level of reserves will delay the collapse but not avoid it. Even without a banking collapse, the economy still converges to a consumption trap with positive probability. Savings are maximal in the consumption trap, but are used entirely to pay back obligations of banks. No long-term investments can be financed and GDP is minimal. We discuss stronger intervention rules that avoid both a collapse and the consumption trap, confirming that capital requirements are an early indicator signaling when intervention may become necessary. Our analysis provides an explanation why economies which experience a banking crisis may endure long-lasting economic downturns
Democratic mechanisms : double majority rules and flexible agenda costs by Hans Gersbach( Book )
11 editions published between 2002 and 2005 in English and held by 35 libraries worldwide
We introduce democratic mechanisms where individual utilities are not observable by other people at the legislative stage. We show that the combination of three rules can yield e±cient provision of public projects: first, flexible and double majority rules where the size of the majority depends on the proposal and taxed and non-taxed individuals need to support the proposal; second, flexible agenda costs where the agenda-setter has to pay a certain amount of money if his proposal does not generate enough supporting votes; third, a ban on subsidies. We also illustrate that higher dimensional uncertainty about project parameters can make it easier to achieve first-best allocations and that universal equal treatment with regard to taxation is undesirable
Flexible majority rules by Ulrich Erlenmaier( Book )
10 editions published between 1999 and 2001 in English and German and held by 35 libraries worldwide
In this paper we introduce flexible majority decision rules where the size of the majority depends on the proposal made by the agenda setter. Flexible majority rules can mitigate the disadvantages of democracies in the provision of public projekts. In many cases, the combination of the priciples taxation constraint to majority winners, a ban of subsidies, costly agenda setting and flexible majority rules constitute a socially optimal democratic constitution. Flexible majority rules might also be a useful decision-making procedure in other circumstances
Should the individual voting records of central bankers be published? by Hans Gersbach( Book )
5 editions published between 2001 and 2002 in English and held by 35 libraries worldwide
Wir untersuchen, ob die Veröffentlichung über das individuelle Abstimmungsverhalten von Zentralbankratsmitgliedern gesamtwirtschaftlich nützlich ist, wenn in der Öffentlichkeit Unsicherheit über die Effizienz von Mitgliedern des Zentralbankrats besteht und sich diese um eine Wiederwahl bemühen. Wir weisen nach, dass eine Veröffentlichung zunächst Schaden anrichtet, weil etwas weniger effiziente Mitglieder des Zentralbankrats versuchen, hocheffiziente Zentralbankratsmitglieder in ihren Bemühungen um eine Wiederwahl nachzuahmen. Nach der Wiederwahl sind die Verluste aber geringer, wenn die Abstimmung veröffentlicht wird, weil die Regierung hocheffiziente von weniger effizienten Zentralbankratsmitgliedern leichter unterscheiden und sie einzeln zur Rechenschaft ziehen kann. Die negativen Auswirkungen einer Transparenz des Abstimmungsverhaltens überwiegen aber, und die Nachteile sind insgesamt immer größer, wenn die Abstimmung veröffentlicht wird
Reelection threshold contracts in politics by Hans Gersbach( Book )
12 editions published between 2001 and 2005 in English and held by 35 libraries worldwide
When politicians are provided with insufficient incentives by the democratic election mechanism, we show that social welfare can be improved by threshold contracts. A threshold incentive contract stipulates a performance level which a politican must reach in order to have the right to stand for reelection. Read my lips would turn into read my contracts. Reelection thresholds can be offered by politicians during campaigns and do not impair the liberal principle of free and anonymous elections in democracies
Emission taxes and the design of refunding schemes by Hans Gersbach( Book )
8 editions published in 2000 in English and held by 35 libraries worldwide
We examine how emission taxes should be refunded to firms in order to create optimal incentives to invest in cleaner technologies. Since refunds cannot be made dependent on investments, an alternative way is to give back taxes to firms according to market shares. We show that universally applicable refunding schemes must be linear in market shares. Moreover, a socially optimal tax/tax refunding scheme exists if pollution is proportional to output and firms compete à la Cournot. If short-term abatement technologies exist, tax/tax refunding schemes can still provide second-best allocations. If firms are price takers, however, refunding taxes according to market shares is harmful. Since imperfect competition is a prominent phenomenon in many polluting industries, the design of socially optimal refunding schemes is an essential part of environmental regulation
Competition of politicians for incentive contracts and elections by Hans Gersbach( Book )
7 editions published between 2000 and 2001 in English and held by 34 libraries worldwide
The long-run economic costs of AIDS : theory and an application to South Africa by Clive Bell( Book )
10 editions published in 2003 in English and held by 33 libraries worldwide
Most existing estimates of the macroeconomic costs of AIDS, as measured by the reduction in the growth rate of gross domestic product, are modest. For Africa--the continent where the epidemic has hit the hardest--they range between 0.3 and 1.5 percent annually. The reason is that these estimates are based on an underlying assumption that the main effect of increased mortality is to relieve pressure on existing land and physical capital so that output per head is little affected. Bell, Devarajan, and Gersbach argue that this emphasis is misplaced and that, with a more plausible view of how the economy functions over the long run, the economic costs of AIDS are almost certain to be much higher. Not only does AIDS destroy existing human capital, but by killing mostly young adults, it also weakens the mechanism through which knowledge and abilities are transmitted from one generation to the next. The children of AIDS victims will be left without one or both parents to love, raise, and educate them. The model yields the following results. In the absence of AIDS, the counterfactual benchmark, there is modest growth, with universal and complete education attained within three generations. But if nothing is done to combat the epidemic, a complete economic collapse will occur within three generations. With optimal spending on combating the disease, and if there is pooling, growth is maintained, albeit at a somewhat slower rate than in the benchmark case in the absence of AIDS. If pooling breaks down and is replaced by nuclear families, growth will be slower still. Indeed, if school attendance subsidies are not possible, growth will be distinctly sluggish. In all three cases, the additional fiscal burden of intervention will be large, which reinforces the gravity of the findings. This paper--a product of the Office of the Vice President, Human Development Network--is part of a larger effort in the network to evaluate the economic consequences of HIV/AIDS
Debt contracts, collapse and regulation as competition phenomena by Hans Gersbach( Book )
13 editions published between 1997 and 1998 in English and held by 32 libraries worldwide
This paper studies a credit market with adverse selection and moral hazard where sufficient sorting is impossible.The crucial novel feature is the competition between lenders in their choice of contracts offered. Qualities of investment projects are not observable by banks and investment decisions of entrepreneurs are not contractible, but output conditional on investment is. We explain the empirically observed prevalence of debt contracts as an equilibrium phenomenon with competing lenders. Equilibrium contracts must be immune against raisin{picking by competitors. Non{debt contracts allow competitors to offer sweet deals to particularly good debtors, who will self{select to choose such a deal, while bad debtors distribute themselves across all offered contracts. Competition of banks introduces three possibilities for a breakdown of credit markets that do not occur when a bank has a monopoly. First, average returns decrease since banks compete for good lenders which may make the lending altogether unprofitable. Second, banks can have an incentive to offer a debt contract and additional equity contracts to intermediate debtors. This combination, however, is in turn dominated by a simple debt contract that is only attractive for very good entrepreneurs. As a result no equilibrium in pure strategies exists. Existence can be restored, if the permissible types of contracts are limited by regulation resembling the separation of investment and commercial banking in the U.S.Third, allowing for random delivery on credit contracts leads to a break-down since all banks want to avoid the contract with the highest chance of delivery: that contract attracts all bad entrepreneurs
The optimal capital structure of an economy by Hans Gersbach( Book )
9 editions published between 2001 and 2003 in English and held by 30 libraries worldwide
When inefficiency begets efficiency by Hans Gersbach( Book )
10 editions published between 2003 and 2004 in English and held by 29 libraries worldwide
Collective consumption decisions taken by the members of a household may prove inefficient. The impact on market performance depends on whether household inefficiencies are caused by inefficient net trades with the market or by inefficient distribution of resources within households. Inefficient internal distribution always results in inefficient equilibrium allocations. This leads us to consider competitive forces as a disciplinary device for households. Competition of households for both resources and members can eliminate or reduce inefficient internal distribution
Awareness of general equilibrium effects and unemployment by Hans Gersbach( Book )
13 editions published between 2001 and 2005 in English and held by 26 libraries worldwide
We examine wage-bargaining in a two-sector economy when employers and labor unions in each sector are not always aware of all general equilibrium feedback effects. We show analytically that if agents only consider labor demand effects, low real wages and low unemployment result. With an intermediate view, i.e. when partial equilibrium effects within a sector are taken into account, high real wages and unemployment result. If all general equilibrium effects are considered at once, low real wages and low unemployment again result. The assumption that unions and employers' federations are not able to incorporate all feedback effects from other sectors may explain the persistence of high unemployment in Europe
Productivity improvements in public organizations by Hans Gersbach( Book )
9 editions published between 2000 and 2004 in English and German and held by 26 libraries worldwide
Cake division by majority decision by Hans Gersbach( Book )
6 editions published in 2006 in English and German and held by 14 libraries worldwide
We consider a collective choice process where three players make proposals sequentially on how to divide a given quantity of resources. Afterwards, one of the proposals is chosen by majority decision. If no proposal obtains a majority, a proposal is drawn by lot. We establish the existence of the set of subgame perfect equilibria, using a suitable refinement concept. In any equilibrium, the first agent offers the whole cake to the second proposal-maker, who in turn offers the whole cake back to the first agent. The third agent is then indifferent about dividing the cake between himself and the first or the second agent
Redesigning democracy : more ideas for better rules by Hans Gersbach( Book )
7 editions published between 2004 and 2017 in English and held by 11 libraries worldwide
Could democracy do better? This book presents a vision on optimal democracies and a set of new rules to help achieve them. The monograph follows on the author's successful book "Designing Democracy" from 2005 and further develops its ideas. While liberal democracies are the best systems of self-governance for societies, they rarely provoke great enthusiasm. Democracies have been known to fail in achieving efficient outcomes and fair distributions of wealth. Moreover, many citizens take the democratic system for granted, simply because they have yet to experience an alternative. This book argues that the potential offered by democracies has not yet been exhausted, and that optimal democracies are both the Utopia for societies and the aim that scientists should commit themselves to making a reality. Furthermore, the book suggests a number of insightful rules to improve the functioning of democracies. "We all know what to do, we just don't know how to get re-elected after we have done it." This famous quip by Jean-Claude Juncker perfectly encapsulates the challenge this book takes on: how to redesign our democratic institutions to overcome political short-termism and make our democracies more efficient. Several radical but highly relevant proposals are explored, ranging from long-term incentive contracts for politicians, prediction markets over the outcomes of the next election that could be useful for incentive purposes, minority voting, initiative group constitutions, and so on. All these highly innovative proposals are rigorously grounded in standard economic analysis. I highly recommend this book to anyone concerned about the state of our democracies and looking for constructive reforms. Patrick Bolton, Columbia University, USA In a time of reeling democracies, it is urgent to explore how to improve on the electoral system for the benefit of society. Hans Gersbach has developed a most innovative and thought-provoking research agenda at the intersection
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Alternative Names
Gersbach, H. 1959-
Hans Gersbach economista suizo
Hans Gersbach econoom uit Zwitserland
Hans Gersbach Schweizer Ökonom
Hans Gersbach Swiss economist
English (180)
German (12)
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