Changes in income distribution by cantons
While taxes are levied centrally in most countries, it is a special feature of Switzerland that the cantons can levy a considerable proportion of their taxes themselves. This enables the cantons to procure the resources they need. It also gives them the opportunity to compete for the wealthy, which seems to affect regional inequality between and within cantons. This is illustrated by the data visualization below, which shows the evolution of price-adjusted average incomes (y-axis) and inequality (x-axis) measured by the Gini coefficient over the period 1950-2013. The general growth in prosperity in the boom years of the post-war period, which is reflected in an increase in incomes in all cantons, can be clearly seen. The phase of stagnation in the 1990s is also clearly visible. From the 2000s onwards, we can see how Zug, Schwyz and Ob- and Nidwalden in particular stand out – in terms of average income and especially in terms of inequality in income distribution. The motion graph was originally built for an article on the knoten & maschen Blog of the Bern University of Applied Sciences.
(created August 2017)