Une privatisation partielle sous contrainte. Le cas de la Compagnie des eaux de Berlin

Abstract : In 1999, the city of Berlin was facing an important budget deficit and ceded 49.9% of the assets of its water service company to a private consortium that included the electric grid operator RWE and the French operator Vivendi, for a duration of 29 years. Less than 15 years later, these two private partners have sold their assets and the company is now coming back to its municipal owner. By focusing on this episode, the paper seeks to compare two models of urban services: the “French model” of subcontracted management, and the German “strong local public model.” It emphasizes the major role played by secondary institutions (technical norms, legal regulations and accounting categories) in framing the cooperation between these different models as well as the use water operators make of them in order to create, maintain or call into question such a cooperation. It suggests that while partial privatization has been made possible by important interventions on these institutions (legal model, rates), they have been used a few years later in order to organize the return of Berlin’s water company to the public domain.
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Thomas Blanchet. Une privatisation partielle sous contrainte. Le cas de la Compagnie des eaux de Berlin. Actes de la Recherche en Sciences Sociales, Editions du Seuil, 2014, 203 (3), pp.60-73. ⟨10.3917/arss.203.0060⟩. ⟨hal-01191514⟩



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