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Siting public facilities: a theoretical and empirical analysis of the Nimby syndrome in Italy

Author

Listed:
  • Roberta Occhilupo

    () (Bank of Italy, Economics, research and international relations)

  • Giuliana Palumbo

    () (Bank of Italy, Economics, research and international relations)

  • Paolo Sestito

    () (Bank of Italy, Economics, research and international relations)

Abstract

The paper discusses the economic problem and the institutional features underlying the Nimby syndrome, and illustrates preliminary empirical evidence for Italy. It argues that siting procedures taking local preferences into account should be preferred when the heterogeneity in preferences across communities is greater than the heterogeneity in constructing and operating costs across sites. The elicitation of preferences is better pursued through auction-like mechanisms rather than multilateral negotiations if: the characteristics of the facility and the institutional context are such that credible information about the risks associated with the facility are available; conflicting preferences at the local level can be preliminarily aggregated; and compensations are mainly monetary. Empirical results suggest that the intensity of local opposition is greater when the perceived risk associated with the facility is higher and more concentrated, and the communication between different levels of government poor. The conflict between highly centralized siting procedures and highly decentralized administrative institutions, the difficulty of providing credible information about the risks associated with the facility, and low political commitment are identified as the critical points.

Suggested Citation

  • Roberta Occhilupo & Giuliana Palumbo & Paolo Sestito, 2011. "Siting public facilities: a theoretical and empirical analysis of the Nimby syndrome in Italy," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 91, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  • Handle: RePEc:bdi:opques:qef_91_11
    as

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    File URL: http://www.bancaditalia.it/pubblicazioni/qef/2011-0091/QEF_91.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Laurent-Lucchetti, Jérémy & Leroux, Justin, 2011. "Choosing and sharing," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 296-300, September.
    2. Jacob K. Goeree & Theo Offerman, 2003. "Competitive Bidding in Auctions with Private and Common Values," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(489), pages 598-613, July.
    3. David Pérez-Castrillo & David Wettstein, 2002. "Choosing Wisely: A Multibidding Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1577-1587, December.
    4. Minehart, Deborah & Neeman, Zvika, 2002. "Effective Siting of Waste Treatment Facilities," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 303-324, March.
    5. Ghirardato, Paolo & Marinacci, Massimo, 2002. "Ambiguity Made Precise: A Comparative Foundation," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 102(2), pages 251-289, February.
    6. Myerson, Roger B. & Satterthwaite, Mark A., 1983. "Efficient mechanisms for bilateral trading," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 265-281, April.
    7. Kunreuther, Howard & Kleindorfer, Paul R, 1986. "A Sealed-Bid Auction Mechanism for Siting Noxious Facilities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 295-299, May.
    8. Mathias Dewatripont & Jean Tirole, 2005. "Modes of Communication," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(6), pages 1217-1238, December.
    9. O'Sullivan Arthur, 1993. "Voluntary Auctions for Noxious Facilities: Incentives to Participate and the Efficiency of Siting Decisions," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 12-26, July.
    10. Groves, Theodore, 1973. "Incentives in Teams," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(4), pages 617-631, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    siting procedures; local preferences; constructing and operating costs; auction; negotiation;

    JEL classification:

    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • D44 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Auctions

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