Bauer Business Focus

Taxes & Trust

Guest: Professor Janet Meade

As we approach Tax Day, it’s time to think about how both citizens and the government can work toward greater tax compliance. Professor Janet Meade, with the Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston, has some thoughts.

“Trust isn’t a word typically associated with tax,” she said. “Yet, research shows that trust ― both among citizens themselves and between citizens and the government ― can affect willingness to pay.”

Professor Meade continued “So how do we build trust into our tax culture? We address perceived inequities in our tax law. We support the idea that paying taxes is the right thing. We demand our taxing authorities to provide consumer-friendly service that treats taxpayers as clients, not potential criminals. And, we publicize the link between tax payments and government services. In short, we start by trusting ourselves.”

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