IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/pra/mprapa/10538.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Political accountability, incentives, and Contractual design of public private partnerships

Author

Listed:
  • Athias, Laure

Abstract

Service adaptations, when there is changing demand or problems regarding the service provision, constitute a major issue in Public Private Partnerships (PPPs). So far, studies have explained the ex post adaptation problems by the distorted incentives for the private public-service provider to invest in adaptation efforts. However, as any PPP is between a public authority and a private public-service provider (no market price), public authorities have also an important role to play in the adaptation of the private public-service provision over time. This paper studies how the contractual design of PPPs affects accountability and incentives for contractually unanticipated service adaptations. More specifically, we observe worldwide two main different contracting out procedures: the concession contract and the availability contract. The main difference between these two contractual practices concerns the demand risk, which is borne by private providers in the first case and by public authorities in the second case. This paper shows that there are two main effects of the contractual design on accountability. (1) Concession contracts, compared to availability contracts, motivate more public authorities from investigating and responding to public demands. This is due to the fact that under a concession contract consumers are empowered, i.e. have the possibility to oust the private provider, which provides public authorities with more credibility in side-trading. (2) Concession contracts can give greater adaptation effort incentives to private providers than availability contracts, since, if private providers bear the demand risk, they can receive private gains from implementing the adaptation. The striking policy implication of this paper is then that the trend towards a greater resort to contracts where private providers bear little or no demand risk may not be optimal in terms of allocative efficiency.

Suggested Citation

  • Athias, Laure, 2007. "Political accountability, incentives, and Contractual design of public private partnerships," MPRA Paper 10538, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:10538
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/10538/1/MPRA_paper_10538.pdf
    File Function: original version
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/17089/2/MPRA_paper_17089.pdf
    File Function: revised version
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Eduardo Engel & Ronald Fischer & Alexander Galetovic, 2013. "The Basic Public Finance Of Public–Private Partnerships," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 11(1), pages 83-111, February.
    2. Skamris, Mette K. & Flyvbjerg, Bent, 1997. "Inaccuracy of traffic forecasts and cost estimates on large transport projects," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 4(3), pages 141-146, July.
    3. Timothy Besley & Robin Burgess, 2002. "The Political Economy of Government Responsiveness: Theory and Evidence from India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1415-1451.
    4. 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.
    5. Laure Athias & Stéphane Saussier, 2007. "Un partenariat public-privé rigide ou flexible ?. Théorie et application aux concessions routières à péage," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 58(3), pages 565-576.
    6. Oliver Hart, 2003. "Incomplete Contracts and Public Ownership: Remarks, and an Application to Public-Private Partnerships," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(486), pages 69-76, March.
    7. Eduardo Engel & Ronald Fischer & Alexander Galetovic, 2006. "Privatizing Highways in the United States," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 29(1), pages 27-53, September.
    8. Antonio Estache, 2006. "PPI Partnerships vs. PPI Divorces in LDCs," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 29(1), pages 3-26, September.
    9. Athias, Laure & Nuñez, Antonio, 2008. "Winner's curse in toll road concessions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 101(3), pages 172-174, December.
    10. 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.
    11. 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.
    12. J. Luis Guasch, 2004. "Granting and Renegotiating Infrastructure Concessions : Doing it Right," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15024.
    13. Engel, Eduardo M.R.A. & Fischer, Ronald & Galetovic, Alexander, 2007. "The Basic Public Finance of Public-Private Partnerships," Center Discussion Papers 9280, Yale University, Economic Growth Center.
    14. Matthew Ellman, 2006. "Does privatising public service provision reduce accountability?," Economics Working Papers 997, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
    15. repec:hrv:faseco:30727607 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. 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)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. David Martimort & Flavio Menezes & Myrna Wooders & ELISABETTA IOSSA & DAVID MARTIMORT, 2015. "The Simple Microeconomics of Public-Private Partnerships," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 17(1), pages 4-48, February.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Political accountabiliy; Public services provision; Public Private Partnerships; Incomplete contracts; Consumers empowerment;

    JEL classification:

    • D86 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Economics of Contract Law
    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • H10 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - General
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
    • O17 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:10538. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Joachim Winter). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/vfmunde.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.