Events at CERGE-EI

Thursday, 4 June, 2009 | 09:30 | Defense

Silvester van Koten: “Essays on the Unbundling of Electricity Networks in the EU and the USA: Theory and Empirics”

Dissertation Committee:
Andreas Ortmann (chair)
Peter Katuščák
Libor Dušek
Dirk Engelmann
Sergey Slobodyan

 

Abstract:

This Ph.D. dissertation focuses on a central question about regulation in the EU and US electricity markets: the effects of vertical integration of generation and transmission and distribution networks. I focus on the forms of vertical integration where the generation and network firms are partly separated, such as in a legal or organizational form. Such form of separation is called unbundling. In the first two papers, I develop theoretical models to analyze the economic effects of vertical integration under legal unbundling (firms are legally separated entities and have the same owner) relative to ownership unbundling (firms are legally separated entities and have different owners). Both papers have policy implications for the regulation of the EU and US electricity markets, and make new contributions to auction theory, especially toehold auctions. In the first paper I consider the legal unbundling of the network activities; in the second paper I consider the legal unbundling of both the network activities and the generation activity. In both papers I find theoretical evidence that, in terms of efficiency, legal unbundling gives results inferior to ownership unbundling. Furthermore, I find solutions for several cases of toehold auctions that have not been solved before and that I believe to be interesting. In the third paper, I study the factors that have driven the choice and speed of implementation of different forms of unbundling. I find tentative evidence that questionable (corrupt?) practices may have played a role in selecting less stringent unbundling regimes.


Full Text: “Essays on the Unbundling of Electricity Networks in the EU and the USA: Theory and Empirics” by Silvester van Koten