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Internal Regulation By Mixed Enterprises: The Case Of The Italian Water Sector


  • Alessandro MARRA


This paper aims at proposing an economic analysis of mixed enterprises in local utilities. We suggest that the public service concession to mixed enterprises could embody a noteworthy substitute to the traditional public provision and the concession to totally private enterprises. The starting point of the entire analysis is that ownership allows the (public) owner to gather more information about the actual management of the firm, according to property rights theory. Following it, we conclude that under certain conditions mixed enterprises could significantly reduce asymmetric information between regulators and regulated firms by implementing a sort of 'internal' regulation. With more information, the public authority can stimulate the private operator to be more efficient and can monitor it more effectively with respect to the fulfilment of contractual obligations. Moreover, concerning the latter function, the board of directors of these enterprises can be the suitable place where public and private representatives can meet to solve all disputes arising from incomplete contracts. Copyright 2007 The Authors Journal compilation © CIRIEC 2007.

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  • Alessandro MARRA, 2007. "Internal Regulation By Mixed Enterprises: The Case Of The Italian Water Sector," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 78(2), pages 245-275, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:annpce:v:78:y:2007:i:2:p:245-275

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Benedetto Gui, 2000. "Beyond Transactions: On the Interpersonal Dimension of Economic Reality," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(2), pages 139-169, June.
    2. Preston, Anne E, 1989. "The Nonprofit Worker in a For-Profit World," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 7(4), pages 438-463, October.
    3. Weisbrod, Burton A, 1983. "Nonprofit and Proprietary Sector Behavior: Wage Differentials among Lawyers," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(3), pages 246-263, July.
    4. Handy, Femida & Katz, Eliakim, 1998. "The Wage Differential between Nonprofit Institutions and Corporations: Getting More by Paying Less?," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 246-261, June.
    5. Goddeeris, John H, 1988. "Compensating Differentials and Self-selection: An Application to Lawyers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(2), pages 411-428, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. da Cruz, Nuno F. & Marques, Rui Cunha, 2012. "Mixed companies and local governance: no man can serve two masters," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 59778, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    2. Romano, Giulia & Guerrini, Andrea & Campedelli, Bettina, 2015. "The new Italian water tariff method: A launching point for novel infrastructures or a backwards step?," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 45-53.
    3. Nuno Ferreira da Cruz & Pedro Simões & Rui Cunha Marques, 2013. "The Hurdles of Local Governments with Ppp Contracts in the Waste Sector," Environment and Planning C, , vol. 31(2), pages 292-307, April.
    4. Julie De Brux & Frédéric Marty, 2014. "IPPP - Risks and opportunities An economic perspective," Post-Print halshs-00990951, HAL.
    5. Ruiz-Villaverde, Alberto & González-Gómez, Francisco & J. Picazo- Tadeo, Andrés, 2015. "The privatisation of urban water services: theory and empirical evidence in the case of Spain," INVESTIGACIONES REGIONALES - Journal of REGIONAL RESEARCH, Asociación Española de Ciencia Regional, issue 31, pages 157-174.
    6. repec:eee:jrpoli:v:54:y:2017:i:c:p:71-80 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Di Giulio, Marco & Galanti, Maria Tullia & Moro, Francesco Niccolò, 2016. "Political coalitions, local leaders and the internationalization of local public services in Italy," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 144-151.
    8. Marques, Rui Cunha & Berg, Sanford V, 2010. "Revisiting the strengths and limitations of regulatory contracts in infrastructure industries," MPRA Paper 32890, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. N.F. Cruz & R.C. Marques & A. Marra & C. Pozzi, 2014. "Local Mixed Companies: The Theory And Practice In An International Perspective," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 85(1), pages 1-9, March.
    10. Ruiz-Villaverde, Alberto & Picazo-Tadeo, Andrés J. & González-Gómez, Francisco, 2015. "The ‘social choice’ of privatising urban water services: A case study of Madrid in Spain," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 616-629.
    11. Guerrini, Andrea & Romano, Giulia, 2013. "The process of tariff setting in an unstable legal framework: An Italian case study," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 78-85.

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