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Reforming the local public sector: economics and politics in privatization of water and solid waste

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  • Germa Bel
  • Xavier Fageda

Abstract

Several empirical studies have analyzed the factors that influence local privatization. We examine the influence of transaction costs and political factors on local governments' choices through new variables. We consider two relevant services accounting for different amounts of transaction costs: water and solid waste delivery. Our results show that privatization is less common for water, which has higher transaction costs. Furthermore, we find that municipalities with a conservative ruling party privatize more often regardless of the ideological orientation of the constituency. Finally, we find that intermunicipal cooperation may be a suitable organizational form for some municipalities.

Suggested Citation

  • Germa Bel & Xavier Fageda, 2008. "Reforming the local public sector: economics and politics in privatization of water and solid waste," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(1), pages 45-65.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jpolrf:v:11:y:2008:i:1:p:45-65
    DOI: 10.1080/17487870802134884
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Pérez-López, Gemma & Prior, Diego & Zafra-Gómez, José Luis & Plata-Díaz, Ana María, 2016. "Cost efficiency in municipal solid waste service delivery. Alternative management forms in relation to local population size," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 255(2), pages 583-592.
    2. Germà Bel & Xavier Fageda & Melania Mur, 2010. "¿Por qué se privatizan servicios en los municipios (pequeños)? Evidencia empírica sobre residuos sólidos y agua," Hacienda Pública Española, IEF, vol. 192(1), pages 33-58, March.
    3. Bel Germà & Fageda Xavier & E. Mildred, 2014. "Is private production of public services cheaper than public production? A meta-regression analysis of solid waste and water services," Public administration issues, Higher School of Economics, issue 3, pages 103-140.
    4. Germà Bel & Mildred E. Warner, 2016. "Factors explaining inter-municipal cooperation in service delivery: a meta-regression analysis," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 91-115, June.
    5. Halstead, John M. & Mohr, Robert D. & Deller, Steven C., 2010. "Service Delivery in Rural Municipalities: Privatize, Cooperate, or Go It Alone?," 2010 Annual Meeting, July 25-27, 2010, Denver, Colorado 60991, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    6. Germà Bel & Xavier Fageda, 2008. "Privatization and competition in the delivery of local services: An empirical examination of the dual market hypothesis," Working Papers XREAP2008-04, Xarxa de Referència en Economia Aplicada (XREAP), revised Apr 2008.
    7. Daniel Albalate & Germà Bel & R. Richard Geddes, 2012. "“Recovery Risk and Labor Costs in Public-Private-Partnerships: Contractual Choice in the U.S. Water industry”," IREA Working Papers 201222, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised Dec 2012.
    8. Shu-Hen Chiang, 2014. "The dilemma of "Twin Cities": is the suburban dependence hypothesis applicable?," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(2), pages 149-163, June.
    9. Andrés Picazo-Tadeo & Francisco González-Gómez & Jorge Wanden-Berghe & Alberto Ruiz-Villaverde, 2012. "Do ideological and political motives really matter in the public choice of local services management? Evidence from urban water services in Spain," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 151(1), pages 215-228, April.
    10. Germà Bel & Xavier Fageda & Melania Mur, 2011. "Why do municipalities cooperate to provide local public services? An empirical analysis," IREA Working Papers 201118, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised Oct 2011.
    11. Juri Demuth & Hans W. Friederiszick & Steffen Reinhold, 2018. "Reverse privatization as a reaction to the competitive environment: Evidence from solid waste collection in Germany," ESMT Research Working Papers ESMT-18-02, ESMT European School of Management and Technology.
    12. Amir HEFETZ & Mildred E. WARNER, 2010. "Dynamics of service provision: service, market and place characteristics," Departmental Working Papers 2010-33, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
    13. Ana Elena IOSIF, 2014. "Public - private interdependence: an effective tool in water supply services," EuroEconomica, Danubius University of Galati, issue 2(33), pages 19-35, November.

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