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Public Ownership as a Signalling Device

Author

Listed:
  • Dag Morgen Dalen
  • Espen R. Moen
  • Christian Riis

Abstract

We study public ownership from the perspective of political economics. A partly partisan government runs a state-owned firm. The number of employees the government wants to hire depends both on economic conditions and on the preferences of the government, both unknown to the electorate. The government's policy towards the state-owned firm gives a signal of its preferences, and may thereby influence the probability that the government is re-elected. As a result, the governance of the firm becomes inefficient and static, in the sense that it does not react adequately to changing economic conditions.

Suggested Citation

  • Dag Morgen Dalen & Espen R. Moen & Christian Riis, 2001. "Public Ownership as a Signalling Device," Nordic Journal of Political Economy, Nordic Journal of Political Economy, vol. 27, pages 3-12.
  • Handle: RePEc:noj:journl:v:27:y:2001:p:3-12
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    File URL: http://www.nopecjournal.org/NOPEC_2001_a01.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Schmidt, Klaus M, 1996. "The Costs and Benefits of Privatization: An Incomplete Contracts Approach," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(1), pages 1-24, April.
    2. Swank, Otto H., 1998. "Towards an economic theory of party ideology," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 223-240, May.
    3. Harrington, Joseph E, Jr, 1993. "Economic Policy, Economic Performance, and Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 27-42, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • L33 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Comparison of Public and Private Enterprise and Nonprofit Institutions; Privatization; Contracting Out

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