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Optimal Ownership of Public Goods Reconsidered

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  • Schmitz, Patrick W.

Abstract

Consider a non-governmental organization (NGO) that can invest in a public good. Should the government or the NGO own the public project? In an incomplete contracting framework with split-the-difference bargaining, Besley and Ghatak (2001) argue that the party who values the public good most should be the owner. We demonstrate the robustness of their insight when the split-the-difference rule is replaced by the deal-me-out solution. Our finding is in contrast to the private good results of Chiu (1998) and De Meza and Lockwood (1998), who show that the optimal ownership structure crucially depends on whether the split-the-difference rule or the deal-me-out solution is used.

Suggested Citation

  • Schmitz, Patrick W., 2014. "Optimal Ownership of Public Goods Reconsidered," MPRA Paper 91457, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:91457
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Schmitz, Patrick W., 2015. "Government versus private ownership of public goods: The role of bargaining frictions," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 132(C), pages 23-31.
    2. Schmitz, Patrick W. & Kusterer, David J., 2018. "Government versus Private Ownership of Public Goods: Experimental Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 13204, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Kusterer, David J. & Schmitz, Patrick W., 2020. "Public goods, property rights, and investment incentives: An experimental investigation," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 177(C), pages 514-532.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    ownership; incomplete contracts; investment incentives; public goods; bargaining;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C78 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Bargaining Theory; Matching Theory
    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • D86 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Economics of Contract Law
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
    • L31 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Nonprofit Institutions; NGOs; Social Entrepreneurship

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