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Incomplete Contracts and Public Ownership: Remarks, and an Application to Public-Private Partnerships

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  • Oliver Hart

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Abstract

The question of what should determine the boundaries between public and private firms in an advanced capitalist economy is a highly topical one. In this paper I discuss some recent theoretical thinking on this issue. I divide the paper into two parts. First, I make some general remarks about the relationship between the theoretical literature of privatization and incomplete contracting theories of the firm. Second, I use some of the ideas from this literature to develop a very preliminary model of public-private partnerships.

Suggested Citation

  • Oliver Hart, 2002. "Incomplete Contracts and Public Ownership: Remarks, and an Application to Public-Private Partnerships," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 02/061, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  • Handle: RePEc:bri:cmpowp:02/061
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    File URL: http://www.bris.ac.uk/Depts/CMPO/workingpapers/wp61.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Stephen King & Rohan Pitchford, 2008. "Private or Public? Towards a Taxonomy of Optimal Ownership and Management Regimes," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 84(266), pages 366-377, September.
    2. Timothy Besley & Maitreesh Ghatak, 2001. "Government Versus Private Ownership of Public Goods," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1343-1372.
    3. Bennett, John & Iossa, Elisabetta, 2006. "Building and managing facilities for public services," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(10-11), pages 2143-2160, November.
    4. Oliver Hart & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1997. "The Proper Scope of Government: Theory and an Application to Prisons," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1127-1161.
    5. repec:hrv:faseco:30727607 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Grout, Paul A, 1997. "The Economics of the Private Finance Initiative," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(4), pages 53-66, Winter.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    organizational behaviour; scope of government; publicly provided goods;

    JEL classification:

    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • H1 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • H4 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods

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