Governments run some things better than the private sector: SHOCK!

Who Should Own and Control Urban Water Systems? Historical Evidence from England and Wales
by Brian Beach, Werner Troesken, Nicola Tynan – #22553 (DAE HE PE)


Nearly 40% of England’s privately built waterworks were municipalised
in the late 19th century. We examine how this affected public health
by pairing annual mortality data for over 600 registration districts,
spanning 1869 to 1910, with detailed waterworks information.
Identification is aided by both institutional hurdles and
idiosyncratic delays in the municipalisation process.
Municipalisation lowered deaths from typhoid fever, a waterborne
disease, by nearly 20% but deaths from non-waterborne causes were
unaffected. Results are also robust to the adoption of several
strategies that control for the possibility of mean reversion and
other potential confounds.

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I am and will always be Not Trampis
I am and will always be Not Trampis
5 years ago

A very long time ago I found out that it mattered not who owned the asset , private or public sector, what mattered the most was the competition in that industry. I assume that is probably still the case.

I think if that industry is a monopoly it is easier for the Government to ensure the allocation of resources is optimal.