To Steal, or Not to Steal: Attitudes towards Electricity Theft in Northern India

To Steal, or Not to Steal: Attitudes towards Electricity Theft in Northern India

Van Munching Hall Room 1207 (map)

Power theft remains rampant in many countries, posing an obstacle to effective electricity sector reform and ensuring proper, safe access to power. In India, electricity theft is estimated to account for 20-25% of generated power. One reason why existing policies have failed to curb theft could be because of a prevailing social norm of acceptance. Dr. Urpelainen examines factors affecting the social acceptance of theft activity, including the social and economic contexts of the offenders, existing power supply quality, as well as the respondent's own socioeconomic circumstances.

Institutional Complementarities: The Origins of Experimentation in China’s Plug-in Electric Vehicle Industry

Institutional Complementarities: The Origins of Experimentation in China’s Plug-in Electric Vehicle Industry

Van Munching Hall Room 1207 (map)

A vast literature on technology transitions within industries suggests that early phases of new technologies are marked by periods of intense experimentation, but we know little about the conditions under which these periods emerge. In contrast to the innovation trajectories of multinational and Chinese arms of joint venture (JV) firms, independent domestic Chinese firms (those with no history of international JV partnerships) are undertaking significant experimentation across multiple levels of the emerging PEV technology platform. We propose the concept of “institutional complementarities” to describe how interactions among institutions may have turned regional markets into protected laboratories, extending the incubation periods for independent domestic firm experimentation. While this diverse experimentation may be an important antecedent of technology transition, consolidation induced by national policy standardization or competitive pressure may be required for PEV innovations to scale beyond their early, protected regional markets.