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Infraestructuras: ¿Qué podemos decir los economistas?
[Infrastructure: what can the economists say?]


  • de Rus, Gines


Infrastructures have been traditionally built, maintained and operated by the public sector. Road and railway networks, energy, electricity and water were traditionally designed in public sector headquarters in many countries until the eighties. Since then, and due to fiscal crisis and public sector inefficiencies, among other factors, privatization is a key ingredient of the industrial policy all over the world. Technological change and the analysis of economists have modified the conventional view which assimilated infrastructure and public monopoly. Technological developments explain part of the change in the telecommunication markets. Moreover, the economic analysis showed that the electricity sector, railways or ports had several activities which could be unbundled as a way to introduce competition. One of the field which has attracted the attention of economic research in the last two decades is the contribution of public infrastructure to economic growth, though economists had been investigating long time before how to assess investment projects in public infrastructure, or how should prices be set in the context of long live assets, sunk costs, congestion and externalities This paper provides a broad overview of the economics of infrastructure.

Suggested Citation

  • de Rus, Gines, 2000. "Infraestructuras: ¿Qué podemos decir los economistas?
    [Infrastructure: what can the economists say?]
    ," MPRA Paper 12194, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:12194

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Aschauer, David Alan, 1989. "Is public expenditure productive?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 177-200, March.
    2. Gramlich, Edward M, 1994. "Infrastructure Investment: A Review Essay," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(3), pages 1176-1196, September.
    3. Crampes, Claude & Estache, Antonio, 1998. "Regulatory trade-offs in the design of concession contracts," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 1-13, March.
    4. Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano & Diego Puga, 1998. "Agglomeration in the Global Economy: A Survey of the 'New Economic Geography'," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(6), pages 707-731, August.
    5. Diego Puga, 2002. "European regional policies in light of recent location theories," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 2(4), pages 373-406, October.
    6. Kerf, M. & Gray, R.D. & Irwin, T. & Levesque, C. & Taylor, R.R. & Klein, M., 1998. "Concessions for Infrastructure. A Guide to their Design and Award," Papers 399, World Bank - Technical Papers.
    7. Roger Vickerman & Klaus Spiekermann & Michael Wegener, 1999. "Accessibility and Economic Development in Europe," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(1), pages 1-15.
    8. Leroy P. Jones & Pankaj Tandon & Ingo Vogelsang, 1990. "Selling Public Enterprises: A Cost/Benefit Methodology," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262600625, January.
    9. David Alan Aschauer, 1989. "Public investment and productivity growth in the Group of Seven," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Sep, pages 17-25.
    10. Mas Ivars Matilde & Pérez García Francisco & Uriel Jiménez Ezequiel, 2005. "El stock de capital en España y su distribución territorial (1964-2002)," Books, Fundacion BBVA / BBVA Foundation, edition 0, number 201146, December.
    11. Engel, Eduardo & Fischer, Ronald & Galetovic, Alexander, 1997. "Highway Franchising: Pitfalls and Opportunities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 68-72, May.
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    More about this item


    Infraestructure; utilities; regulation cost-benefit analysis;

    JEL classification:

    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
    • K23 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Regulated Industries and Administrative Law
    • L91 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Transportation: General
    • D61 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis


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