£26.99 | $41.95

10 April 2014
ISBN: 9781783600175
240 pages
216 x 138mm

Africa, Asia, Business Studies, Economics, Latin America, Politics

Also available as Hardback

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Rethinking Corporatization and Public Services in the Global South

Edited by David A. McDonald

After three decades of privatization and anti-state rhetoric, government ownership and public management are back in vogue. This book explores this rapidly growing trend towards ‘corporatization’ - public enterprises owned and operated by the state, with varying degrees of autonomy. If sometimes driven by neoliberal agendas, there exist examples of corporatization that could herald a brighter future for equity-oriented public services.

Drawing on original case studies from Asia, Africa and Latin America, this book critically examines the histories, structures, ideologies and social impacts of corporatization in the water and electricity sectors, interrogating the extent to which it can move beyond commercial goals to deliver progressive public services. The first collection of its kind, Rethinking Corporatization and Public Services in the Global South offers rich empirical insight and theoretical depth into what has become one of the most important public policy shifts for essential services in the global South.


'Is corporatization friend or foe of quality public service provision?  This book offers a thorough critique, providing a theoretical framework and a set of criteria for evaluating this new reform in public service delivery. Case studies from around the world show the potential benefits and pitfalls of corporatization and raise questions about the role of the state and the meaning of "public" in service delivery. This is a must-read for policy-makers, practitioners and scholars of public service reform.'
Mildred E. Warner, Professor, Department of City and Regional Planning, Cornell University

'This book offers fresh thinking on corporatization and public enterprises and addresses important research questions in a multidisciplinary way. The analysis is grounded in new evidence and field research, making it essential reading for anyone interested in the benefits and risks of contemporary trends of governance reforms in the provision of essential public services.'
Massimo Florio, Professor of Public Economics and Jean Monnet Chair ad personam of EU Industrial Policy, University of Milan

About the Author:

David McDonald is professor of global development studies at Queen’s University, Canada, and co-director of the Municipal Services Project. His research relates primarily to the delivery of essential services in the global South, and encompasses a broad spectrum of related questions around urbanization, environmental justice and uneven development.