nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2008‒07‒05
four papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Parnu College - Tartu University

  1. Direct Democracy and Local Public Goods: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Indonesia By Benjamin A. Olken
  3. Performance budgeting: Its rise and fall By Nguyen, Hoang-Phuong
  4. Natural concentration in industrial research collaboration By Bastian Westbrock

  1. By: Benjamin A. Olken
    Abstract: This paper presents an experiment where 48 Indonesian villages were randomly assigned to choose development projects through either representative-based meetings or direct election-based plebiscites. Plebiscites resulted in dramatically higher satisfaction among villagers, increased knowledge about the project, greater perceived benefits, and higher reported willingness to contribute. Changing the political mechanism had much smaller effects on the actual projects selected, with some evidence that plebiscites resulted in projects chosen by women being located in poorer areas. The results show that direct participation in political decision making can substantially increase satisfaction and legitimacy, even when it has little effect on actual decisions.
    JEL: D72
    Date: 2008–06
  2. By: Pillai N., Vijayamohanan; Alkire, Sabina
    Abstract: There is considerable synergy among those working on the capability approach and also those within poverty reduction, to identify stronger ways of measuring capabilities and to improve multidimensional poverty comparisons. The present study is an outcome of a collaborative research initiative by Centre for Development Studies (CDS), Kerala and Harvard University and focuses on three questions, viz., (i) how accurately do certain indicators of freedom capture agency or self-determination? (ii) how do we compare multidimensional poverty vectors that include freedoms? (iii) can we develop capability measures – and analytical tools – that can be used by NGOs and small organizations rather than only large institutions? The study specifically attempts to use Ryan and Deci measure of autonomy, which has the unique benefit of seeming to apply in both individualist and collectivist cultures, on the data obtained on the process of empowerment of groups of women in the context of the State-sponsored ‘Kudumbasree’ programme in Kerala.
    Keywords: Capability; Agency; Empowerment; Kerala; Kudumbasree;
    JEL: D63 C43 I32
    Date: 2007–04–20
  3. By: Nguyen, Hoang-Phuong
    Abstract: Among various budgeting theories and practices at the federal level, performance budgeting has played an important role with its long developmental history. Performance budgeting was short-lived as it was replaced by program budgeting in the early 1960s. Looking at the period between the first decade of the twentieth century and the mid-1960s, the present paper seeks to investigate two major questions to which budgetary literature has given short shrift: 1) What forces led to the emergence of performance budgeting and its earlier forms?, and 2) Why did the budgeting practice fall into disfavor at the federal level shortly after a prolonged period to get institutionalized? The paper's investigation of the first question reveals three major factors that gave rise to performance budgeting and its forerunners: the rise of scientific management by Frederick Taylor, increasing public pressure on the government's role and practices, and the expansion of government responsibilities. Three principal opposing forces attributed to the long gestation of performance budgeting and its premature decline are its inherent weaknesses and limitations, the legislature's hostility to it, and the rapid rise of a new budgeting practice.
    JEL: H83
    Date: 2007–11
  4. By: Bastian Westbrock
    Abstract: Empirical work suggests that the network of research and development alliances is asymmetric, with a small number of firms involved in the majority of partnerships. This paper relates the structure of the collaboration network to a fundamental characteristic of the demand for research output: the benefits of knowledge accumulation create private and social incentives for a concentration of collaborative activities. I theoretically investigate the formation of bilateral collaborative links in two different industry settings, one socially managed, the other oligopolistic. I find that in both cases a concentrated network is the typical equilibrium structure as well as the socially efficient structure.
    Keywords: R&D collaboration, market structure, networks
    JEL: D43 D85 L13
    Date: 2008–06

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