Behavioural Microsimulation Modelling for Tax Policy Analysis in Australia: Experience and Prospects

Melbourne Institute Working Paper No. 02/05

Date: January 2004


John Creedy
Guyonne Kalb


This paper describes microsimulation modelling in non-technical terms and explains what can be achieved with microsimulation modelling in general, and the Melbourne Institute Tax and Transfer Simulator (MITTS) in particular. The focus is on behavioural microsimulation modelling, which takes individuals labour supply responses into account when analysing tax and transfer reforms. Microsimulation models are built to replicate closely the considerable degree of heterogeneity observed in the population. Several examples of recent uses of MITTS are given and briefly described. Given the relatively recent development of behavioural microsimulation models, there are several opportunities for further extensions. For example, it would be valuable to allow for the demand side of labour, indicating whether new labour force participants are likely to find work or to allow for life-cycle dynamics, which are important to deal with population-ageing issues and female labour force participation.

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