A city’s utility company as an axis for its sustainable development: A case study of EPM of Medellín, Colombia
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
This article discusses the central role that a utility company can play in the sustainable development of a city by studying the case of EPM of Medellín, Colombia. After presenting a brief history of the development of public services in Colombia, the article discusses the company’s management model, the local laws and regulations affecting it, the direct and indirect benefits for the city and the risks that come along with the power it has acquired. It is claimed that early decisions to maintain public ownership of key assets and provide the company with administrative autonomy have allowed it to remain competitive, despite the liberalization of the utilities market in the 1990s. This in turn has allowed the city to dramatically increase its municipal revenue and thus its spending on social projects. This case promises to contribute to the discussion on entrepreneurial cities looking to increase their citizens’ well-being through municipally-owned corporations that are commercial and social at the same time. It also contributes to the debate about operational efficiency between the private and the public sectors, and the central role that utility providers play in the construction of more sustainable cities. Ultimately, this case study can contribute with good practices from countries of which Academia knows so little.
Sustainable Urban Development; Key Assets; Administrative Autonomy; Popular Control; Entrepreneurial City; Public Ownership, Operational Efficiency
Environmental Engineering Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-117944OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-117944DiVA: diva2:812363