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Harvard Kennedy School

Comparative Tax Policy and Administration

Aug 19—30
10 days
Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
USD 12500
USD 1250 per day

How it works


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Tax theory is relatively straightforward: The challenge is to adapt basic principles to the complex variety of domestic and international economic, political, social and historical constraints. Oftentimes, that's easier said than done.

Our executive program, Comparative Tax Policy and Administration, can show you how to deal with this challenging dynamic.

Designed for Tax Policy Professionals

The program brings together high-level practitioners from government, academia and the corporate sector to look at which elements of taxation work best in addressing particular kinds of challenges. (This contrasts with the alternate approach, which is to advance a unitary “best practice” model of taxation.)

Developed by Harvard Kennedy School faculty, this 10-day comparative tax policy executive program will help you reconcile the universal unpopularity of taxation with your desire to generate significant tax revenue in an economically efficient and social equitable manner.

Comparative Tax Policy and Administration will provide you with:

  • An examination of the latest developments in the design and implementation of tax systems around the world
  • Practical tools to help formulate the most appropriate tax policies and tax administration for your particular environment
  • One-on-one interaction with world-class faculty and leading experts in tax policy
  • A lasting network of high-level practitioners facing similar challenges who will serve as an invaluable professional resource after the program


Comparative Tax Policy and Administration is not a program on the fundamentals of taxation. All participants are expected to be familiar with the basics. Nor does this program provide training in the implementation of a particular tax system.

Instead, the program deals with the most difficult topics in the design and implementation of tax systems from a strategic and tactical perspective.

Harvard faculty with decades of experience in the field will lead lectures, class discussions and group exercises. To take advantage of participants’ considerable expertise and experience, the program also relies heavily on participant interaction.

Further, Comparative Tax Policy and Administration makes extensive use of the case study method pioneered at Harvard. You and your classmates will study and discuss real-world situations that place you in the role of the decision-maker. Through analysis of the experience and interactive discussions about the critical choices made by key players along the way, you will gain valuable insights, training and practice in making challenging leadership decisions about actual situations in real time.

The Comparative Tax Policy and Administration curriculum will address:

  • Taxation and national development strategies, expenditure policies and sub-national fiscal challenges
  • Comparative tax policy and administration as well as the design and assessment of tax systems
  • Tax reform and alternative strategies for improving tax systems

Who should attend

Comparative Tax Policy and Administration is designed for tax policy professionals seeking to deepen their knowledge of the latest approaches in tax policy design and implementation. Participants come from a range of sectors, bringing different perspectives and insights into the practical aspects of tax policy issues.

Recommended applicants include:

  • Senior government tax officials
  • External tax advisors and attorneys
  • In-house private-sector tax specialists
  • Leaders of taxpayer institutions, organizations and advocacy groups
  • Providers of tax policy implementation assistance
  • Prominent scholars and researchers in the field of tax policy and administration


Jay Rosengard, Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, has forty years of international experience designing, implementing, and evaluating development policies in public finance and fiscal strategy, tax and budget reform, municipal finance and management, intergovernmenta...

Next dates

Aug 19—30
10 days
Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
USD 12500
USD 1250 per day

How it works

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