The governance of competition: The interplay of technology, economics, and politics in European Union electricity and telecom regimes

David Levi-Faur*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study raises two basic questions. How is competition in telecom and electricity governed? What explains the considerable differences in their governance regimes? To answer these questions the study compares the economic and technological characteristics of the sectors; deconstructs the telecom sector into two micro-regimes (terminal type-approval and networks interconnection) and the electricity sector into three (generation, transmission, distribution); defines intergovernmentalism, supranationalism, liberalism, and etatism for each of the five segments of the sectors; distinguishes three different kinds of competition - deregulated competition, regulation-of-competion, and regulation-for-competition; and deconstructs the European policy game into three different games (sectorial, national, and union). The European Union's policy choices are: supranational governance in telecom and intergovernmental governance in electricity. The introduction of competition as an administrative process leaves considerable room for entrepreneurship and political choice by European nation-states and strengthens their regulation capacities. Differences in the governance regime for telecom and electricity are explained by a state-centered multi-level approach.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)175-207
Number of pages33
JournalJournal of Public Policy
Volume19
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1999
Externally publishedYes

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