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Ownership and control in local public utilities: the Italian case

Author

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  • Andrea Calabrò

    ()

  • Mariateresa Torchia

    ()

  • Francesco Ranalli

    ()

Abstract

The paper discusses the ownership and control structures of local public utilities by showing evidence from the Italian case. In this discussion, the focus is on three main aspects: the ownership structure, the board composition and independence, and citizens’ involvement (service charters). The main results from this study reveal that there are controversial aspects, which need further investigation. The existence of a principal–principal conflict is clearly arising from an in-depth analysis of the ownership structures. In addition, the board of directors, because of the lack of actual independence, does not seem to be a useful arena to manage and solve these conflicts. Other governance mechanisms are thus needed, to increase accountability to citizens. Within this, service charters seem to be a useful tool to protect the “public interest”. However, service charters content analysis suggests that further implementation actions are due. The paper contributes to the debate on conflicts of interests and governance mechanisms in local public utilities suggesting possible developments of agency theory and discussing implications for further research. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Andrea Calabrò & Mariateresa Torchia & Francesco Ranalli, 2013. "Ownership and control in local public utilities: the Italian case," Journal of Management & Governance, Springer;Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA), vol. 17(4), pages 835-862, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jmgtgv:v:17:y:2013:i:4:p:835-862
    DOI: 10.1007/s10997-011-9206-1
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:rom:rampas:v:2015:y:2015:i:25:p:55-77 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. François Bafoil & Rachel Guyet & Gilles Lepesant & Amélie Bonnet, 2016. "Décentralisation énergétique et innovations territoriales: Une comparaison européenne dans les secteurs de l’éolien, de la biomasse et du photovoltaïque," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/679c89dj0m8, Sciences Po.
    3. Alessandra Allini & Rossi Francesca Manes & Riccardo Macchioni, 2014. "Do Corporate Governance Characteristics Affect Non-Financial Risk Disclosure in Government-owned Companies? The Italian Experience," FINANCIAL REPORTING, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2014(1), pages 5-31.
    4. Gabriele D'Alauro, 2014. "La contabilizzazione delle fusioni nelle local public utilities italiane quotate: inquadramento concettuale ed evidenze empiriche," ECONOMIA E DIRITTO DEL TERZIARIO, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2014(3), pages 451-472.

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