Date of Award

8-2011

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department

Policy Studies

Advisor

Tollison, Robert D

Committee Member

Hughes , David

Committee Member

Stewart, Jr , Joseph

Committee Member

Willis , David

Abstract

ABSTRACT
The study seeks to answer the question, why are states adopting revenue decoupling in the electricity market, by investigating the relationship between policy adoption and attributes of the electricity market, the structure of the state utility commissions, and the political climate of the state. The study examines the period 1978-2008. Two econometric models, the marginal risk set model and the conditional risk set model, are estimated to predict the influence of covariates on the probability of the state adopting revenue decoupling in the electricity market. The models are both variants of the Cox proportional hazard model and use different underlying assumptions about the nature of adoption of revenue decoupling and when the states are considered to be at risk of adoption.
Results suggest that market attributes, such as the source of electricity generation in the state, state energy intensity, and the distribution of non-public and public utilities, significantly influence the adoption of the policy. Also, the method of selecting commissioners and the party affiliation of elected officials in the state are important factors. The study concludes by suggestions to improve the implementation and evaluation of revenue decoupling in the electricity markets.

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