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Public Policy and the Development of High Speed Trains in France and the United States

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Abstract: France and the United States have pursued dramatically different policies to facilitate the growth of high speed rail transport. In France, central state planners have orchestrated the development of high speed train services, while in the United States that task has been left to entrepreneurs and state and local governments. The difference is surprising in the light of the fact that passenger rail transport is a state monopoly in both countries.

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