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Public Private Partnerships: The Swiss Specificity

Author

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  • Athias, Laure
  • Macina, Moudo
  • Wicht, Pascal

Abstract

While most countries have adopted public private partnerships, the prevalence of such arrangements differs widely across countries and the differences have been persistent. In particular, while around 700 PPP projects have been launched in the United Kingdom between 1994 and 2011, Switzerland has experienced only 2 of such arrangements over the same period of time, and exhibits one of the lowest number of PPPs within OECD countries. What could explain this Swiss specificity? Is this specificity a good or a bad thing? What is the right number of PPPs? The goal of this chapter is to answer these questions. To this aim, we first define precisely what PPPs are, and what they are not (Section 1). We then develop the theoretical framework that points out the conditions under which PPP arrangements are optimal, or relatively more optimal than the other possible modes of provision (Section 2). This normative analysis highlights that the choice to resort to PPPs should be driven by the characteristics of the public service considered. As we expect public services to be quite similar across countries of similar level of economic development, we can infer that it is only cultural and institutional differences that could help to explain the differences in actually implemented PPPs. We then consider the Swiss cultural and institutional specificities that might lead the number of PPPs to be under optimal in Switzerland but also over optimal in other countries (Section 3). Finally, we conclude with some policy recommendations.

Suggested Citation

  • Athias, Laure & Macina, Moudo & Wicht, Pascal, 2017. "Public Private Partnerships: The Swiss Specificity," MPRA Paper 84131, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:84131
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gregg, Paul & Grout, Paul A. & Ratcliffe, Anita & Smith, Sarah & Windmeijer, Frank, 2011. "How important is pro-social behaviour in the delivery of public services?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(7-8), pages 758-766, August.
    2. Timothy Besley & Maitreesh Ghatak, 2005. "Competition and Incentives with Motivated Agents," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 616-636, June.
    3. Athias, Laure & Nuñez, Antonio, 2008. "Winner's curse in toll road concessions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 101(3), pages 172-174, December.
    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. Antonis Adam & Manthos Delis & Pantelis Kammas, 2014. "Fiscal decentralization and public sector efficiency: evidence from OECD countries," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 17-49, February.
    6. Maskin, Eric & Tirole, Jean, 2008. "Public-private partnerships and government spending limits," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 412-420, March.
    7. António Afonso & Ludger Schuknecht & Vito Tanzi, 2005. "Public sector efficiency: An international comparison," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 123(3), pages 321-347, June.
    8. repec:hrv:faseco:30727607 is not listed on IDEAS
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Public private partnerships; Transaction costs; Switzerland; Culture; Institutions;

    JEL classification:

    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • H44 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Publicly Provided Goods: Mixed Markets

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