Corporatising water and wastewater services in Scotland : governance, regulation and operations

  • Thomas James Kane

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

Abstract

This thesis examines the provision of Scotland’s Water and Wastewater Services (WWS) and considers how regulation, governance and operations have changed since the turn of the century. The adoption and implementation of a policy framework which affords a key role to private sector participation in a formally public utility is a central focus of this thesis. The analysis developed below of the politics of water locates the Scottish case firmly within wider global processes: this involves studying the transmission of policy ideas from supra-national agencies to the Scottish national level, and the actors within these policy networks. Neoliberal globalisation provides some of the conceptual framing of this research, and the empirical substance of the thesis is drawn from fieldwork conducted at the United Nations (UN), European Union (EU), UK and Scottish levels. The research argues that the increasing corporatisation of WWS in Scotland observed over the span of this research is possible due to a specific configuration of structures and agents. EU directives, devolution and marketisation provide some of the structural conditions for water policy making. Epistemic water communities, comprising think tanks, policy entrepreneurs and regulators are key agents identified in this research promoting corporatisation. This thesis argues that corporatisation is steadily eroding the public nature of Scotland’s water system.
Date of Award1 Oct 2009
LanguageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University Of Strathclyde

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