NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Contracting for Government Services: Theory and Evidence from U.S. Cities

Jonathan Levin, Steven Tadelis

NBER Working Paper No. 13350
Issued in August 2007
NBER Program(s):   IO   PE

Local governments can provide services with their own employees or by contracting with private or public sector providers. We develop a model of this "make-or-buy" choice that highlights the trade-off between productive efficiency and the costs of contract administration. We construct a dataset of service provision choices by U.S. cities and identify a range of service and city characteristics as significant determinants of contracting decisions. Our analysis suggests an important role for economic efficiency concerns, as well as politics, in contracting for government services.

download in pdf format
   (315 K)

email paper

This paper is available as PDF (315 K) or via email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w13350

Published: CONTRACTING FOR GOVERNMENT SERVICES: THEORY AND EVIDENCE FROM U.S. CITIES† JONATHAN LEVIN1, STEVEN TADELIS2 Article first published online: 3 SEP 2010 DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-6451.2010.00430.x

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded these:
Shleifer w6665 State Versus Private Ownership
Bajari, Houghton, and Tadelis w12051 Bidding for Incomplete Contracts: An Empirical Analysis
Bajari, McMillan, and Tadelis w9757 Auctions Versus Negotiations in Procurement: An Empirical Analysis
Engel, Fischer, and Galetovic w13284 The Basic Public Finance of Public-Private Partnerships
Engel, Fischer, and Galetovic w15300 Soft Budgets and Renegotiations in Public-Private Partnerships
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Data
People
About

Support
National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us