Public Choice

, Volume 136, Issue 3–4, pp 429–445 | Cite as

Per-capita public expenditures and population size: a non-parametric analysis using French data

  • Robert Breunig
  • Yvon Rocaboy


Based on the median voter model, we specify a flexible general framework of the effect of municipality size on per-capita public expenditures. Previous literature has recognized that municipality size should have a non-linear effect on the quality of public goods provision and to this end different papers have applied a range of alternative parametric specifications. Using a very large sample of French “communes” we are able to estimate the effect of municipality size semi-parametrically. In contrast with the parametric specifications, we find evidence of the U-shaped relationship between per-capita public expenditures and population which is predicted by theory.


Local Public Economics Semi-parametric econometrics Congestion 

JEL Classification

C14 H4 H7 R51 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Research School of Social Sciences, H C Coombs BldgThe Australian National UniversityCanberraAustralia
  2. 2.Université de Rennes 1, CREM-CNRS, Faculté des sciences économiquesRennesFrance

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