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Oates Wallace An Essay On Fiscal Federalism

Wallace E. Oates (March 21, 1937 – October 30, 2015) was a Distinguished University Professor of Economics at the University of Maryland.[1]

He taught in the fields of public economics and environmental economics, and was considered a major international figure in both fields.[1] His first book was Fiscal Federalism (1972) and he authored numerous other books and articles, including The Theory of Environmental Policy (1975), coauthored with William J. Baumol. A Festschrift, Environmental and public economics : essays in honor of Wallace E. Oates, was published in his honor in 1999,[2] and an additional volume of his selected essays in 2004.[3] Another Festschrift, The Tiebout Model at fifty : essays in public economics in honor of Wallace Oates was published in his honor in 2006.[4]

He received his Ph.D. in economics at Stanford in 1965 and joined the faculty at Princeton University.[1] He began at the University of Maryland in 1979.[5]


  • Ladd, Helen F., and Wallace E. Oates. Local Government Tax and Land Use Policies in the United States: Understanding the Links. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, 1998.
  • Oates, Wallace E. The Economics of Fiscal Federalism and Local Finance. Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar, 1998.
  • Oates, Wallace E. The Economics of Environmental Regulation. Cheltenham, U.K.: E. Elgar, 1996.
  • Oates, Wallace E. Studies in Fiscal Federalism. Aldershot, Hants, England: E. Elgar, 1991.
  • Baumol, William J., and Wallace E. Oates. The Theory of Environmental Policy. Cambridge [Cambridgeshire]: Cambridge University Press, 1988.
    • Translated into Spanish in 1982 as La teoría de la política económica del medio ambiente.
  • Oates, Wallace E. The Economics of the Environment. Aldershot, Hants, England: E. Elgar, 1992. According to WorldCat, the book is held in 462 libraries [6]
  • Oates, Wallace E. Fiscal Federalism. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1972. According to WorldCat, the book is held in 595 libraries [7] Reprinted, 2011 [8]
    • Translated into Spanish as Federalismo fiscal, 1977
  • Baumol, William J., Wallace E. Oates, and Sue Anne Batey Blackman. Economics, Environmental Policy, and the Quality of Life. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1979.
  • Oates, Wallace E. The Political Economy of Fiscal Federalism. Lexington, Mass: Lexington Books, 1977.
  • Kelejian, Harry H., and Wallace E. Oates. Introduction to Econometrics; Principles and Applications. New York: Harper & Row, 1974.
    • Translated into Portuguese as Introdução a econometria principios e aplicações, 1978
    • Translated into Spanish as Introducción a la econometría : principios y aplicaciones in 1995
  • McKinnon, Ronald I., and Wallace E. Oates. The Implications of International Economic Integration for Monetary, Fiscal, and Exchange-Rate Policy. Princeton, N.J.: International Finance Section, Dept. of Economics, Princeton University, 1966.


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‘This book is a reprint of a text that first appeared in 1972, the subjects it addresses are of the utmost importance, considering the events taking place at present. It revives the discussion of government intervention in the economy, pursuing the objectives of full employment, equitable income distribution and efficient resource allocation. Following the revolutionary idea of effective demand theory put forward by Keynes and Kalecki, who were against the 'classical' proposition that free market forces can achieve the best possible and most efficient level of economic activity, Oates argues that capitalist economies based on private ownership has no rewards for using all the existing available economic resources in society, in particular the labour force. Of equal importance, Oates argues that competitive economic systems are unable to reach the most desirable level of income distribution. Furthermore, Oates claims that oligopolistic markets that (according to Kalecki) are the natural structures of capitalist economies are unable to reach satisfactory solutions of productive resources, employment or a desirable distribution of income. Therefore this book, from a deep liberal perspective, acknowledges that markets on their own are inefficient; centralized structures are therefore required to modify decisions based on private interests. There is no doubt the topics covered in this book continue to be central themes under the political, economic and social conditions of the twenty-first century, especially important in the light of the present situation of low wages, massive unemployment and the economic recession, which began in 2008.’
– Noemi Levy-Orlik, Review of Keynesian Economics

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