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Title: The Cost Efficiency of Water Utilities: When Does Public Ownership Matter?
Authors: Pazzi, Silvia
Tortosa-Ausina, Emili
Duygun, Meryem
Zambelli, Simona
First Published: 19-Aug-2016
Publisher: Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Citation: Local Government Studies, 2016, 42 (6), pp. 980-1003
Abstract: This study explores the impact of different ownership types on the efficiency of water utilities. Theories and evidence have shown a puzzling relationship between ownership and performance. Moreover, relatively recent contributions (Andrews et al. 2011) have argued that this relationship can be further convoluted by the effect of organisational and environmental variables. The current study aims to contribute to this literature by providing some empirical evidence for Italy, by proposing a methodology that combines non-parametric efficiency estimation and cluster analysis. Our main findings indicate that privately owned utilities indirectly controlled by a public organisation reach the highest level of efficiency but, when size and geographical location enter the analysis, ownership has a stronger significant effect on efficiency, and mixed utilities gain higher cost efficiency. Therefore, we may conclude that administrative reforms about privatisation and the institutional setting should consider a set of variables that characterise each individual organisation.
DOI Link: 10.1080/03003930.2016.1207630
ISSN: 0300-3930
eISSN: 1743-9388
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © Taylor & Francis, 2016. This version of the article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives License ( ), which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Description: Following the embargo period the license above applies.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, School of Management

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