By: Laurent A.H. Carnis
Abstract: The private provision of road services and road privatisation has been extensively studied and has generated numerous debates among scholars. Block and Tullock exchanged on the possibility of having a completely privatised road system. Tullock defends the idea such a system is not viable, whereas Block shows a free market for road provision can be easily conceived.
This article proposes a re-examination of this debate and defends a pragmatic and realist approach. Although it shares Block’s conclusions on the possibility of having a free market for road services, it justifies them on a different ground. In fact, the ‘physical obstacle’ argument is less important that it could be previously imagined but it reflects more a socialist tendency to pose the problem.