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The Law and Economics of Taxation

The “Munich-Sydney Conference on the Law and Economics of Taxation” on September 2 and 3 2013 in Munich marked the launch of a new cooperation between the Max Planck Institute for Tax Law and Public Finance and the University of Sydney.

It proved to be a fruitful opportunity for lawyers and economists to exchange thoughts with an international academic audience and showed how profitable it can be to organize academic work beyond disciplinary lines.

Leading researchers from the University of Sydney, the MPI for Tax Law and Public Finance, LMU Munich, the University of Oxford and the Ifo Institute met to discuss their current projects. The range of topics covered during the conference was diverse. It stretched from more general questions, such as the presentation by Ray Rees on the relevance of capital income taxation, a research project (with Patricia Apps), to more specific examinations. Kai Konrad, Director at the MPI for Tax Law and Public Finance, presented a tax compliance experiment (with Tim Lohse and Salmai Qari) studying deception choices and deception detection.

Wolfgang Schön, Director at the MPI for Tax Law and Public Finance, outlined the crucial aspects emerging in the field of international taxation of risk. Moris Lehner from LMU Munich presented a profound analysis of the problems of treaty override from a constitutional and comparative perspective. Jennifer Hill from Sydney Law School offered an overview of conceptions of the shareholders’ role in corporate enterprises over the last century, while Monika Schnitzer from the LMU Munich discussed a paper (with Martin Watzinger) on the question of whether government should subsidize venture capital from an economic point of view.

In a setting of paper presentations by lawyers and comments from economists and vice versa, the participants gained new ideas, especially valuable for those who presented work in progress. The presentations and discussions illustrated that further cooperation on both the international and the interdisciplinary level is of high academic relevance and interest.

September, 2013