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Intermunicipal cooperation and privatization of solid waste services among small municipalities in Spain

  • Germà Bel

    ()

    (Faculty of Economics, University of Barcelona)

  • Melania Mur

    ()

    (Universidad de Zaragoza)

The aim of this paper is to analyze the effects of intermunicipal cooperation and privatization on the delivery costs of urban solid waste services. The results of our empirical analysis, which we conducted among a sample of very small municipalities, indicate that small towns that cooperate incur lower costs for their waste collection service. Cooperation also raises collection frequency and improves the quality of the service in small towns. By contrast, the form of production, whether it is public or private, does not result in systematic differences in costs. Interestingly, the degree of population dispersion has a significant positive relation with service costs.No evidence of scale economies is found because, it would seem, small municipalities exploit them by means of intermunicipal cooperation.

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File URL: http://www.ub.edu/irea/working_papers/2008/200816.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics in its series IREA Working Papers with number 200816.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2008
Date of revision: Dec 2008
Handle: RePEc:ira:wpaper:200816
Contact details of provider: Postal: Tinent Coronel Valenzuela, Num 1-11 08034 Barcelona
Web page: http://www.ub.edu/irea/

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  1. Germà Bel & Elbert Dijkgraaf & Xavier Fageda & Raymond Gradus, 2008. "Similar problems, different solutions: Comparing refuse collection in the Netherlands and Spain," IREA Working Papers 200815, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised Nov 2008.
  2. Eoin Reeves & Michael Barrow, 2000. "The Impact of Contracting Out on the Costs of Refuse Collection Services - The Case of Ireland," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 31(2), pages 129-150.
  3. E. Dijkgraaf & R. Gradus, 2003. "Cost Savings of Contracting Out Refuse Collection," Empirica, Springer, vol. 30(2), pages 149-161, June.
  4. Henry Ohlsson, 2003. "Ownership and Production Costs: Choosing between Public Production and Contracting-Out in the Case of Swedish Refuse Collection," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 24(4), pages 451-476, December.
  5. E. Dijkgraaf & R. H. J. M. Gradus, 2005. "Collusion in the Dutch waste collection market," Industrial Organization 0502006, EconWPA.
  6. Scott J. Callan & Janet M. Thomas, 2001. "Economies of Scale and Scope: A Cost Analysis of Municipal Solid Waste Services," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 77(4), pages 548-560.
  7. E. Dijkgraaf & R. H. J. M. Gradus & B. Melenberg, 2003. "Contracting out refuse collection," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 28(3), pages 553-570, July.
  8. Dubin, Jeffrey A. & Navarro, Peter., 1987. "How Markets for Impure Public Goods Organize: The Case of Household Refuse Collection," Working Papers 633, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  9. Germa Bel & Anton Costas, 2006. "Do Public Sector Reforms Get Rusty? Local Privatization in Spain," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(1), pages 1-24.
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