Tax Administration Research Centre    


Autumn foliage

Professor Lynne Oats


Dear TARC friends,

With mixed emotions I would like to announce that Professor Lynne Oats has decided to retire early at the end of December. Lynne has played an important role in the growth and success of the Tax Administration Research Centre, having been with TARC since its inception is 2013 and having contributed to the leadership of TARC as Deputy Director and Co-Director from 2013 through 2020.

Lynne has been a major driving force behind the tax scholarship, making significant contributions to tax and tax administration research and to the training of the new generation of tax researchers.

Lynne says: “helping to bring TARC into existence and seeing it grow into such a valuable resource for the tax administration community has been a privilege. I will stay connected with the community after my retirement, but maybe not quite so intensively."

In the meantime, I am sure you will all wish to join me in wishing her a happy, healthy and enjoyable retirement!

Professor Christos Kotsogiannis
Director, TARC


TARC Newsletter: Autumn 2020


I hope you are well. Welcome to the Autumn edition of the TARC newsletter.

We have been very busy preparing for our next Workshop on ‘Tax Audits Evaluation’ (9 December 2020) and the TARC Annual Conference 2020 (15-17 December 2020).

The TARC Annual Conference 2020 will cover a broad set of topical themes. Although we would have loved to host you all of you here at the beautiful University of Exeter Campus, this year’s conference will be an online one. Incidentally Exeter University Campus has been recognised as among the best green spaces in the UK so hopefully we will see many of you here for next year's conference.  

The digital-led recovery from COVID-19 continues in almost all countries around the globe, and there is no doubt that it will act as a catalyst for change. Over the last months TARC has also been researching—together with digital research centre INDEX (Initiative in the Digital Economy at Exeter)—on the impact of the tax system on charity giving, and whether digitalization can improve on Gift Aid donations. Gift Aid, a form of tax relief in which a charity can claim an extra 25p for every pound donated, has boosted charitable donations since it was introduced 30 years ago in the UK. It turns out that automating Gift Aid donations can potentially unlock more than £560 million for charities every year. How? By using an individual’s tax status to determine automatically if a Gift Aid declaration is valid and removing the burden on the taxpayer, while processing Gift Aid automatically across all digital donation methods. This is very timely given the impact of COVID-19 on the charity sector. More on this here 

For the latest on TARC – including a fascinating interview with Professor Christiana HJI Panayi, Professor in Tax Law at Queen Mary University of London – please read on.

Seeing you all in December!

In the meantime, stay healthy.

Christos Kotsogiannis
Director, TARC


Members News


We say farewell to…

Dr John D’Attoma who has joined the Internal Revenue Service and Dr Angelos Alexopoulos who is joining Cambridge University at the end of October. They are both continuing to be associated with TARC and its community, as they remain TARC Associate Fellows.

PhD success: Congratulations to Dr Lutfi Rahimi on completing his PhD on Labour supply, tax compliance and universal basic income. He is now teaching economics at the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF) and working as a research fellow at think tank Biruni Institute. We wish him every success in the future.


8th Annual TARC Conference 15-17 December 2020



We are delighted to announce that registration is now open for the 8th annual TARC Conference, taking place online over 3 days from 15 to 17 December 2020.

We have a very packed programme with over 30 tax research papers from across the globe, 2 roundtable discussions (on the impact of COVID-19 on Gender and on Tax Policy in Africa in response to COVID-19) and 3 plenary lectures from 2 outstanding academics and a well-connected policy maker. The programme and registration details can be found on our Conference page

Once registered, more infomation will be sent out to you about how to join the online webinar. We look forward to welcoming you to the conference.


TARC Workshop Series


The TARC Workshop Series continues with Tax Audits Evaluation on 9th December 2020. How effective are audits in enhancing compliance? Do they affect subsequent tax payment behaviour by the audited taxpayers?  Does the impact of audit differ in the terms of the type of audit, or the tax base? These are some of the issues this TARC workshop will address.

Speakers include Brian Erard, Jason DeBacker (University of South Carolina) and Christos Genakos (Cambridge University and AUEB) among others. 

Full programme and registration on Eventbrite

Previous Workshops

Some of the presentations from TARC workshops held online since June 2020 are available to view by following the links below.

COVID-19 and Developing Countries  Public Policies, Institutions and Developing Countries: What are the strategic challenges to address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic? How are attitudes towards taxation changing in response to the crisis?

Detecting Anomalies (and Fraud) in Networks Network Analysis, Machine Learning and Statistics: How can Policy-Institutes utilize networks to achieve aims such as fraud detection? Can advanced data analytics improve the detection of anomalies (fraud) in large and complex networks?

Improving the Resolution of Tax Disputes including contributions reflecting the discretion of tax administrations to deal with tax disputes involving tax fraud by criminal procedures or by civil procedures or by administrative settlements.


TARC Seminar Series 2020/21


The TARC Seminar Series 2020/21 resumes on 4th November 2020 with speakers covering a wide range of tax administration research. Seminars take place on a Wednesday using Zoom.

  • 4th November: Audits, Negotiated Payments, and Optimal Tax Administration: Evidence from China, Wei Cui  University of British Columbia Allard School of Law, Canada
  • 11th November: Investment Responses to Tax Policy under Uncertainty,  Irem Guceri, Said Business School, University of Oxford UK
  • 18th November: Administering a Wealth Tax in the UK,  Andy Summers, LSE UK 

Confirmed speakers for 2021 include, David Agrawal, Michael Overesch, Dominika Langenmayr, Christian Traxler, Annette Alstadsater and Jonathan Weigel.

To find out more about the series and how to register please visit our Seminar page


TARC blog


The TARC blog has had a range of contributions over the summer. Our latest blog post is The Anthropology of Tax by Lotta Björklund Larsen & Robin Smith. It explores a very interesting perspective on TARC from two anthropologists.

Blog posts cover all aspects of tax and tax administration broadly defined and it serves the purpose of a platform where research ideas and topical policies issues can be exchanged and discussed.

If you are interested in contributing a piece (max 1000 words) please send a few lines to describe it to The submission should include information on the author(s)’ affiliation.


An Interview with Professor Christiana HJI Panayi


For this issue, we have an interview with Christiana HJI Panayi, a Professor in Tax Law at Queen Mary University of London. Christiana has published extensively in the area of EU and International Tax Law and is considered a leading expert in her field.

Find out what is keeping Christiana busy at the moment, her view on the European Commission's use of state aid rulings as an anti-avoidance measure and the impact of COVID-19 on tax policy and administration. Read the interview here


We have read...


An informal review of a recently published piece we have read and liked. In this issue, TARC PhD student, Guylaine Nouwoue looks at Compliance Behavior in Networks: Evidence from a Field Experiment; Co-authored by Francesco Drago, Friederike Mengel, and Christian Traxler and published in the American Economic Journal (2020).

A recent strand of research documents that social learning can shape evasion and avoidance decisions within firm and family networks. But how does compliance behaviour diffuse in neighbourhood networks? Can information spreading within this kind of networks play a role in enhancing tax enforcement effectiveness? 


CESifo Special Issue on New Perspectives on Tax Administration


CESifo Economic Studies has just published a special issue on New Perspectives on Tax Administration organised and edited by our Director, Professor Christos Kotsogiannis. The six papers in this special issue present a very informative set of tax and tax administration contributions.


TARC Publications


Journal articles 

Ferraresi, M; Kotsogiannis, C; Rizzo, L; et al. The 'Great Lockdown' and it's Determinants (2020) Economics Letters

James Alm and Antoine Malézieux. 40 Years of Tax Evasion Games: A Meta-Analysis (2020) Experimental Economics

Working papers

Alex Rees-Jones, John D'Attoma, Amedeo Piolatto & Luca Salvadori. 'COVID-19 Changed Tastes for Safety-Net Programs'(2020) NBER Working Paper No. 27865 DOI 10.3386/w27865


In honour of Professor Judith Freedman


The Dynamics of Taxation

Essays in Honour of Judith Freedman
Edited by Glen Loutzenhiser and Rita de la Feria

At TARC, we are honoured to have Professor Freedman on the Academic Advisory Group of the Centre.She will be giving one of the plenary lectures at our conference in December.

A collection of excellent contributions have been recently published in to celebrate her legacy. It focuses on the four areas of taxation scholarship to which Professor Freedman made her most notable contributions: taxation of SMEs and individuals, tax avoidance, tax administration, and taxpayers’ rights and procedures. Professor Freedman has been a major driving force behind the development of tax law and policy scholarship, not only in the UK, but worldwide. The strength and diversity of the contributors to this book highlight the breadth of her impact within tax scholarship. The list encompasses some of the most renowned taxation experts worldwide; they include lawyers, economists, academics and practitioners, from Britain, Canada, Portugal, Australia, Germany, Italy, Malta, Ireland, and Ukraine.

Oct 2020   |   9781509929092   |   384pp   |   Hbk   |    RSP: £85  Use the code UG6 at the checkout to get 20% off your order!  Discount Price: £68


Journal of Tax Administration


The Journal of Tax Administration (JOTA) is a peer-reviewed, open access, online journal. A joint venture between the University of Exeter and the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT), established in 2015. The journal provides academics, tax policymakers and tax practitioners with an interdisciplinary forum through which they can share knowledge and research about all aspects of tax administration. Its editorial board includes leading academics from around the world and its output includes papers written by experts from a range of backgrounds.

The Journal welcomes submissions from both academics and practitioners. Submission information can be found here



TARC is an ESRC Research Centre, and hosted by the University of Exeter Business School. The support of the University of Exeter, and the support of the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) is gratefully acknowledged (grant reference ES/S00713X/1).

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