EUsers book

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The reform of Network Industries:

evaluating privatisation, regulation and liberalisation in the EU

(ELGAR publishing) – December 2017

Since June 2016, the EUsers network has been working on the publication of a book drawing from the research activities carried out over two years of activity. In particular, it includes research outputs originally presented at two events organised in Milan, such as the XV edition of the Milan European Economy Workshop (June 30th 2016) and the EUsers summer school (June 27th – July 1st 2016), and then finalized after internal anonymous review process managed by the Editor of the book and the scientific committee of the Eusers network.  Both events were focused on the policy reforms of the network industries.

The book has been published by Elgar Publisher in December 2017. Click here for more details.

It is expected to contribute to the EU policy debate on Services of General Interest in several ways. In particular, it is addressed to contribute to the existing literature on the empirical evaluation of policy reforms in the network industries, focusing  particularly  on the European policy paradigm and its three main pillars: privatization, unbundling and  (regulated) market entry and liberalization. In particular, three aspects of the book stand out as contributions to the literature.  First, the reforms are analysed through the lenses of the past and possibly future (given an evolving panorama) welfare effects on citizens as users, consistently with the notion of SGI. Second, the role of state-owned or state-invested players is evaluated in this perspective. This analysis mainly encompasses six network industries – namely Electricity, Gas, Railway, Local Public Transport, Water and Waste water, Telecommunications where in many EU member states national or local governments fully or partially own some service providers or core infrastructures.  Both countries and sector-specific peculiarities are discussed. A unique aspect of the book would is the analysis of the role still played by state-owned or state-invested enterprises that, outside the UK, are still significant players. A further feature of this book is the methodological approach adopted in the empirics evaluation of reforms. The main research question is, indeed, the impact of the reforms ultimately on the welfare of citizens. 

The Reform of Network Industries will appeal to academic researchers in the fields of industrial economics, policy and regulation, the economics of European integration, as well as students of economics, business and law. Policymakers, regulators and public administrators will also find this book a stimulating read. It is expected that this audience will make use of this book to get insights on several aspects of the network industries analysed, such as the type of ownership which is more beneficial for household customers across the sectors analysed, the status of EU Directives’ implementation, the determinants of prices, the relationship between satisfaction and services provided, the impacts of reforms progress on the consumers’ wellbeing, etc.

For more information click here.


Massimo Florio (University of Milan)
 PART I: Cross-Cutting Policy Issues
1. The empirical evaluation of regulatory policy reforms in network industries: some methodological issues (Massimo Florio)
2. Public and private enterprises, costs and welfare performance: an overview with suggestions for further research (Johan Willner and Sonja Grönblom)
3. Market reforms, governance and performance: lessons learned from the experience in the EU energy industries ( Steve Thomas and Stefano Clò) 
4. Market structure and state involvement: passenger railways in Europe (Torben Holvad)
 5. Ownership and Firm Performance: Empirical Evidence from the European Telecommunications Industry (2006-14) (Paolo Castelnovo)
6. National public missions, diversity of operators and competition: Postal services in the European Union ( Philippe Bance)
PART II: Empirical Evaluations
7. Does Public Ownership provide affordable and reliable electricity to household customers? Case studies of electricity sector reforms in the UK, France, Germany and Italy (Ajla Cosic, Lea Diestelmeier, Alexandru Maxim, Tue Anh Nguyen and Nicolò Rossetto)
8. Telecommunications policies in Europe: past, present, future and impact on citizens (Serena Marianna Drufuca, Regina Maria Hirsch, Manto Lampropoulou and Rogelio Pesqueira Sanchez)
9. The changing nature of railways in Europe: empirical evidence on prices, investments and quality (Giovanni Esposito, Julia Doleschel, Tobias Kaloud and Jadwiga Urban-Kozlowska)
10. Local Public Transport Services: the efficiency of public enterprises competing with the private sector in the EU member States (Annalisa Negrelli, Anastasia Roukouni and Angelique Chassy)
11. The European gas sector: political-economy implications of the transition from state-owned to mixed-owned enterprises (Roberto Cardinale)

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