Regulation, Ownership, and Costs: A Historical Perspective from Indian Railways
AbstractThis paper studies the relationship between operational costs and state ownership in Indian railways between 1874 and 1912. We find the move to state ownership significantly decreased working expenses. The cost declines are not driven by anticipation effects, changes in reporting standards, or long run trends. Rather, the evidence suggests the colonial Government of India reduced operational costs by cutting labor costs. Our surprising results can be explained by the undemocratic colonial nature of the Government of India, a fiscal system heavily reliant on railways for revenues, and a regulatory environment under private ownership that weakened incentives to lower costs. (JEL L32, L51, L92, N45, N75, O18, R41)
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Journal: Economic Policy.
Volume (Year): 4 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- L32 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Public Enterprises; Public-Private Enterprises
- L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
- L92 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Railroads and Other Surface Transportation
- N45 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - Asia including Middle East
- N75 - Economic History - - Economic History: Transport, International and Domestic Trade, Energy, and Other Services - - - Asia including Middle East
- O18 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
- R41 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Systems - - - Transportation: Demand, Supply, and Congestion
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Dan Bogart & Latika Chaudhary, 2013. "Off the Rails: Is State Ownership Bad for Productivity?," Working Papers 131401, University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Jane Voros) or (Michael P. Albert).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.