Public service contracts

The economics of reform with special reference to the bus sector

Authored by: David A. Hensher

The Routledge Handbook of Transport Economics

Print publication date:  August  2017
Online publication date:  August  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138847491
eBook ISBN: 9781315726786
Adobe ISBN:


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The provision of route bus services in many developed economies has changed considerably over the years. Following an initial situation that typically involved private-sector provision up until the 1970s, as is still common among most developing economies, public-sector monopolies became the norm. A substantial swing to private-sector service provision then began in the 1980s, largely driven by a desire to reduce the growing call of services on the public purse and to provide scope for private-sector innovation, which was thought likely to improve customer services and reduce costs (Hensher and Wallis, 2005).

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