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An Agency Perspective on the Costs and Benefits of Privatization

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  • David Martimort

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Abstract

This paper proposes a unified theoretical framework to discuss the costs and benefits of privatization using the recent advances of Incentive Theory. I begin by presenting a simple model in which the State (the principal) delegates a task (e.g., the production of a public good) to the private sector (the agent). I give and discuss conditions for the “Irrelevance Theorem” due to Sappington and Stiglitz [Sappington, D., & Stiglitz, J. (1987) Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, 6, 567–582] to hold under complete contracting. I then show how various contract incompletenesses can make either public or private ownership optimal. Finally, I provide critical assessments of these results. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2006

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11149-006-0007-4
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Regulatory Economics.

Volume (Year): 30 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 (07)
Pages: 5-44

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Handle: RePEc:kap:regeco:v:30:y:2006:i:1:p:5-44

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Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=100298

Related research

Keywords: Privatization; Regulation; Agency Costs; Incentives; L51;

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References

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  1. Baron, David P., 1989. "Design of regulatory mechanisms and institutions," Handbook of Industrial Organization, in: R. Schmalensee & R. Willig (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 24, pages 1347-1447 Elsevier.
  2. Shirley, Mary & Walsh, Patrick, 2000. "Public versus private ownership : the current state of the debate," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2420, The World Bank.
  3. Armstrong, Mark & Sappington, David E.M., 2007. "Recent Developments in the Theory of Regulation," Handbook of Industrial Organization, Elsevier.
  4. Shapiro, C. & Willing, D.R., 1990. "Economic Rationales For The Scope Of Privatization," Papers 41, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Discussion Paper.
  5. Auriol, Emmanuelle & Picard, Pierre, 2004. "Privatizations in Developing Countries and the Government's Budget Constraint," IDEI Working Papers 459, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Elisabetta Iossa & David Martimort, 2008. "The Simple Micro-Economics of Public-Private Partnerships," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 08/199, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  2. Iossa, Elisabetta & Martimort, David, 2011. "Risk Allocation and the Costs and Benefits of Public-Private Partnerships," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Docweb) 1104, CEPREMAP.
  3. Hoppe, Eva I & Schmitz, Patrick W, 2010. "Public-private partnerships versus traditional procurement: Innovation incentives and information gathering," CEPR Discussion Papers 7681, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Hoppe, Eva I. & Schmitz, Patrick W., 2010. "Public versus private ownership: Quantity contracts and the allocation of investment tasks," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(3-4), pages 258-268, April.
  5. Antonio Estache & L. Wren-Lewis, 2008. "Towards a Theory of Regulation for Developing Countries: Following Laffont's Lead," Working Papers ECARES 2008_018, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  6. Bergantino, Angela Stefania & de Villemeur, Étienne & Vinella, Annalisa, 2007. "Partial Regulation in Vertically Differentiated Industries," IDEI Working Papers 502, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse, revised Apr 2010.
  7. Carlo Cambini & Laura Rondi, 2010. "Regulatory Independence and Political Interference: Evidence from EU Mixed-Ownership Utilities’ Investment and Debt," Working Papers 2010.69, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  8. Antonio Estache & Liam Wren-Lewis, 2009. "Toward a Theory of Regulation for Developing Countries: Following Jean-Jacques Laffont's Lead," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(3), pages 729-70, September.
  9. Carlo Cambini & Laura Rondi, 2010. "Incentive regulation and investment: evidence from European energy utilities," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 38(1), pages 1-26, August.
  10. Bortolotti, Bernardo & Cambini, Carlo & Rondi, Laura, 2013. "Reluctant regulation," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(3), pages 804-828.
  11. Enrico Perotti & Marcel Vorage, 2010. "Bank Ownership and Financial Stability," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 10-022/2, Tinbergen Institute, revised 11 Sep 2010.
  12. Daniel Danau & Annalisa Vinella, 2012. "Public-private contracting under limited commitment," Economics Working Paper Archive (University of Rennes 1 & University of Caen) 201227, Center for Research in Economics and Management (CREM), University of Rennes 1, University of Caen and CNRS.
  13. Angela S. Bergantino & Etienne Billette de Villemeur & Annalisa Vinella, 2006. "A Model of Partial Regulation in the Maritime Ferry Industry," series 0010, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Metodi Matematici - Università di Bari, revised Jan 2006.
  14. Niklas Potrafke, 2010. "Does government ideology influence deregulation of product markets? Empirical evidence from OECD countries," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 143(1), pages 135-155, April.
  15. Volker Ziemann, 2013. "Do Structural Policies Affect Macroeconomic Stability?," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 1075, OECD Publishing.

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