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The Role of Commercial Non-profit Organizations in the Provision of Public Services


  • John Bennett
  • Elisabetta Iossa
  • Gabriella Legrenzi


In this paper we discuss the role of commercial non-profit firms in the provision of public services, referring to three case studies to illustrate the main issues. We consider problems of corporate governance, including the role of the board of members and the scope for performance-related pay. We discuss the performance of such non-profit firms in terms of quality and costs, the particular finance problems of these firms and the implications for risk taking. We also suggest various aspects of non-profit behaviour in public service provision that present interesting avenues for future research. Copyright 2003, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • John Bennett & Elisabetta Iossa & Gabriella Legrenzi, 2003. "The Role of Commercial Non-profit Organizations in the Provision of Public Services," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(2), pages 335-347, Summer.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:oxford:v:19:y:2003:i:2:p:335-347

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Beirne, John & Fratzscher, Marcel, 2013. "The pricing of sovereign risk and contagion during the European sovereign debt crisis," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 60-82.
    2. Anil K. Kashyap & Natalia Kovrijnykh, 2016. "Who Should Pay for Credit Ratings and How?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 29(2), pages 420-456.
    3. Aizenman, Joshua & Hutchison, Michael & Jinjarak, Yothin, 2013. "What is the risk of European sovereign debt defaults? Fiscal space, CDS spreads and market pricing of risk," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 37-59.
    4. Mink, Mark & de Haan, Jakob, 2013. "Contagion during the Greek sovereign debt crisis," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 102-113.
    5. Michael Bergman & Michael M. Hutchison & Svend E. Hougaard Jensen, 2013. "Do Sound Public Finances Require Fiscal Rules Or Is Market Pressure Enough?," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 489, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    6. De Grauwe, Paul & Ji, Yuemei, 2013. "Self-fulfilling crises in the Eurozone: An empirical test," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 15-36.
    7. Arghyrou, Michael G. & Kontonikas, Alexandros, 2012. "The EMU sovereign-debt crisis: Fundamentals, expectations and contagion," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 658-677.
    8. Grossman, Sanford J & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1980. "On the Impossibility of Informationally Efficient Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 393-408, June.
    9. Alsakka, Rasha & ap Gwilym, Owain, 2010. "Leads and lags in sovereign credit ratings," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(11), pages 2614-2626, November.
    10. André Lucas & Bernd Schwaab & Xin Zhang, 2014. "Conditional Euro Area Sovereign Default Risk," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(2), pages 271-284, April.
    11. Alsakka, Rasha & ap Gwilym, Owain, 2013. "Rating agencies’ signals during the European sovereign debt crisis: Market impact and spillovers," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 85(C), pages 144-162.
    12. Beetsma, Roel & Giuliodori, Massimo & de Jong, Frank & Widijanto, Daniel, 2013. "Spread the news: The impact of news on the European sovereign bond markets during the crisis," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 83-101.
    13. Al-Sakka, Rasha & ap Gwilym, Owain, 2010. "Split sovereign ratings and rating migrations in emerging economies," Emerging Markets Review, Elsevier, vol. 11(2), pages 79-97, June.
    14. Richard Cantor & Frank Packer, 1994. "The credit rating industry," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Sum, pages 1-26.
    15. Manuel Arellano & Stephen Bond, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 277-297.
    16. Cantor, Richard & Packer, Frank, 1997. "Differences of opinion and selection bias in the credit rating industry," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(10), pages 1395-1417, October.
    17. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2001. "Rethinking Multiple Equilibria in Macroeconomic Modeling," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2000, Volume 15, pages 139-182 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. John Bennett & Elisabetta Iossa, 2010. "Contracting out public service provision to not-for-profit firms," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 62(4), pages 784-802, October.
    2. repec:spr:epolin:v:44:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s40812-016-0064-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Domingo Soriano & Miguel-Ángel Galindo, 2012. "An overview of entrepreneurial activity in nonprofit organizations in the international context," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 38(3), pages 265-269, April.
    4. Laura Abrardi & Luca Colombo & Pier Angelo Mori, 2016. "Customer Ownership And Quality Provision In Public Services Under Asymmetric Information," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 54(3), pages 1499-1518, July.
    5. Barr, Abigail & Fafchamps, Marcel & Owens, Trudy, 2005. "The governance of non-governmental organizations in Uganda," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 657-679, April.
    6. repec:spr:epolin:v:44:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s40812-016-0029-6 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Abigail Barr & Marcel Fafchamps & Trudy Owens, 2004. "The Resources and Governance of Non-Governmental Organizations in Uganda," Development and Comp Systems 0409047, EconWPA.
    8. Paul A. Grout & Michelle J. Yong, 2003. "The Role of Donated Labour and Not for Profit at the Public/Private Interface," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 03/074, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
    9. Nicola Doni & Pier Angelo Mori, 2014. "Pricing and Price Regulation in a Costumer-Owned Monopoly," Euricse Working Papers 1470, Euricse (European Research Institute on Cooperative and Social Enterprises).
    10. Taptuk Emre Erkoc, 2011. "Mapping Out Economics of Non Profit Sector in Turkish Context," European Journal of Economic and Political Studies, Fatih University, vol. 4(2), pages 35-50.

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