Water Resources Management

, Volume 28, Issue 15, pp 5491–5505 | Cite as

Factors Affecting Water Utility Companies’ Decision to Promote the Reduction of Household Water Consumption



The present paper investigates the factors affecting water utility companies’ decision to implement public information campaigns aimed at promoting sustainable water use and reducing household water consumption. We have analyzed 114 Italian water utility companies. For each we hand-collected data regarding their suggestions for reducing household water consumption and sustainable reporting information, published on the corporate websites. We then classified each utility on the basis of their ownership, diversification, location, sales, population served, tariff and annual rainfall. Using M-quantile regression for count data we have constructed a performance measure of Italian water utility companies and have ranked them by the identification of a unique M-quantile coefficient associated with each datum observed. The paper provides some interesting insights into the type of companies most sensitive to water sustainability issues, providing potential guidance to policy makers in defining a water management framework and selecting firms to manage water services. Larger firms located in the center of Italy, in drought regions and the driest areas, seem to be more sensitive to promoting the reduction of household water consumption. Moreover, companies operating only in the water business that are publicly owned and apply lower tariffs embody the type of institutions that make greater use of web information campaigns to reduce consumption.


Water utilities Sustainability Information campaigns Household water consumption M-quantile regression 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giulia Romano
    • 1
  • Nicola Salvati
    • 1
  • Andrea Guerrini
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Economics and ManagementUniversity of PisaPisaItaly
  2. 2.Department of ManagementUniversity of VeronaVeronaItaly

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