During the last decade the liberalisation of many sectors has contributed to the appearance of a new category of actors: regulatory authorities called upon to manage the difficult transition from legal monopolies to competitive regimes in crucial areas such as telecommunications and energy. In all of Europe a debate - influenced by differing political views and weighty economic interests - is raging concerning the methods and the substance of these authorities' actions. This study develops a model that breaks down regulatory activities into their basic components and defines objective criteria for evaluating each sectorial authority's performance. On the basis of this model, the contributors to this volume explore instances of telecommunications regulation in major European countries (United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Italy) and in the European Union. This comparative analysis highlights the interlocking relationship involving national governments' goals, the European Commission's policies, and the actual accomplishments of national regulatory agencies.
Enzo Pontarollo teaches Industrial Economics at the Catholic University in Milan.
Andrea Oglietti works in the Italian National Authority for Electrical Energy and Gas and collaborates with the Economic Science Department of the Catholic University in Milan.