The Cost Efficiency of Water Utilities: When Does Public Ownership Matter?

Duygun , Meryem ; Tortosa-Ausina , Emili ; Pazzi, Silvia ; Zambelli, Simona (2015) The Cost Efficiency of Water Utilities: When Does Public Ownership Matter?
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Abstract

This study explores the impact of different ownership types on the efficiency of the provision 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 nonparametric 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.

Abstract
Document type
Article
Creators
CreatorsAffiliationORCID
Duygun , Meryem
Tortosa-Ausina , Emili
Pazzi, Silvia
Zambelli, Simona
Keywords
efficiency, geographical location, ownership, size
Subjects
DOI
Deposit date
08 Jan 2016 16:35
Last modified
01 Mar 2016 13:28
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