Estimating the marginal cost of quality improvements: The case of the UK electricity distribution companies
AbstractThe main aim of this paper is to develop an econometric approach to the estimation of marginal costs of improving quality of service. Estimating marginal costs of quality can help energy regulators to design more effective incentive mechanisms for network utilities to achieve optimal quality levels and reduce welfare losses due to sub-optimal quality. We implement this methodology by way of applying it to the case of the UK electricity distribution networks. The proposed method allows us to measure the welfare effect of the observed quality improvements in the UK between 1995 and 2003. Our results suggest that the regulatory incentives to reduce service interruptions have not been strong enough to achieve economically efficient levels of service quality. We, find that the incentives to encourage utilities to reduce network energy losses have led to to performance improvement. We estimate that the observed improvements in quality during the period of the study only represented about 20% of the potential customer welfare gains, hence leaving considerable scope for further economically efficient improvements in service quality.
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.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Energy Economics.
Volume (Year): 34 (2012)
Issue (Month): 5 ()
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eneco
Electricity distribution cost; Marginal cost; Quality service; Social welfare;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
- L94 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Electric Utilities
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Yu, William & Jamasb, Tooraj & Pollitt, Michael, 2009. "Does weather explain cost and quality performance? An analysis of UK electricity distribution companies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 4177-4188, November.
- Guldmann, Jean-Michel, 1985. "A disaggregate econometric analysis of electricity distribution capital costs," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 10(5), pages 601-612.
- William Yu & Tooraj Jamasb & Michael Pollitt, 2009. "Willingness-to-Pay for Quality of Service: An Application to Efficiency Analysis of the UK Electricity Distribution Utilities," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 4), pages 1-48.
- Paul L. Joskow, 2013.
"Incentive Regulation in Theory and Practice: Electricity Distribution and Transmission Networks,"
in: Economic Regulation and Its Reform: What Have We Learned?, pages 291-344
National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Joskow, P.L., 2006. "Incentive Regulation in Theory and Practice: Electricity Distribution and Transmission Networks," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0607, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
- Joskow, Paul L., 2005. "Incentive Regulation in Theory and Practice: Electricity Distribution and Transmission Networks," Working paper 255, Regulation2point0.
- Paul L Joskow, 2005. "Incentive Regulation In Theory And Practice - Electricity Distribution And Transmission Networks," Working Papers 0514, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research.
- Huang, Yi-Ju & Chen, Ku-Hsieh & Yang, Chih-Hai, 2010. "Cost efficiency and optimal scale of electricity distribution firms in Taiwan: An application of metafrontier analysis," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 15-23, January.
- Giannakis, Dimitrios & Jamasb, Tooraj & Pollitt, Michael, 2005. "Benchmarking and incentive regulation of quality of service: an application to the UK electricity distribution networks," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(17), pages 2256-2271, November.
- David Sappington, 2005. "Regulating Service Quality: A Survey," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 27(2), pages 123-154, November.
- Massimo Filippini, 1998. "Are Municipal Electricity Distribution Utilities Natural Monopolies?," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 69(2), pages 157-174, 06.
- A. Yatchew, 2000. "Scale economies in electricity distribution: a semiparametric analysis," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(2), pages 187-210.
- Kjell G. Salvanes & Sigve Tjøtta, 1998. "A Test for Natural Monopoly with Application to Norwegian Electricity Distribution," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 13(6), pages 669-685, December.
- Jamasb, T. & Pollitt, M., 2007.
"Incentive Regulation of Electricity Distribution Networks: Lessons of Experience from Britain,"
Cambridge Working Papers in Economics
0709, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
- Jamasb, Tooraj & Pollitt, Michael, 2007. "Incentive regulation of electricity distribution networks: Lessons of experience from Britain," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(12), pages 6163-6187, December.
- Cronin, Frank J. & Motluk, Stephen A., 2007. "How Effective Are M&As in Distribution? Evaluating the Government's Policy of Using Mergers and Amalgamations to Drive Efficiencies into Ontario's LDCs," The Electricity Journal, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 60-68, April.
- Jamasb, T. & Nepal, R., 2012. "Security of the European Electricity Systems: Conceptualizing the Assessment Criteria and Core Indicators," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1251, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
- Moutinho, Victor & Moreira, António C. & Mota, Jorge, 2014. "Do regulatory mechanisms promote competition and mitigate market power? Evidence from Spanish electricity market," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 403-412.
- Llorca, Manuel & Orea, Luis & Pollitt, Michael, 2013. "Efficiency and Environmental Factors in the US Electricity Transmission Industry," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1318, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei).
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.