nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2010‒11‒13
eight papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Parnu College - Tartu University

  1. Dynamic incentives in organizations: Success and inertia By Ruckes, Martin; Rønde, Thomas
  2. Don't Spread Yourself Too Thin: The Impact of Task Juggling on Workers' Speed of Job Completion By Coviello, Decio; Ichino, Andrea; Persico, Nicola
  3. An empirical study of environmental cost drivers By Simon Alcouffe; Nicolas Berland; Benjamin Dreveton; Moez Essid
  4. Cost of a Ride: The Effects of Densities on Fixed-Guideway Transit Ridership and Capital Costs By Guerra, Erick; Cervero, Robert
  5. Smooth multibidding mechanisms By David Pérez-Castrillo; Nicolas Quérou
  6. Organization and structure of the chain in the Integrated Projects of Food Chain in Basilicata region: the effects on the new rural dynamics By Conto, F.; La Sala, P.; Papapietro, P.
  7. A Model of Delegated Project Choice With Application to Merger Policy.. By Armstrong, Mark; Vickers, John
  8. Rural areas development through endogenous potentials By Theodosiou, Giorgos; Michailidis, Anastasios; Loizou, Efstratios; Chatzitheodoridis, Fotis

  1. By: Ruckes, Martin; Rønde, Thomas
    Abstract: We present a dynamic model in which an employee of a firm searches for business projects in a changing environment. It is costly to induce the employee who found a successful project in the past period to search for a new project. Past success can therefore result in profitreducing corporate inertia. Still, when the firm chooses to counteract the reluctance to search by increasing the power of the incentives, it stimulates initial search efforts and results in higher profits. Corporate restructuring and increasing the employee's authority over time are means to alleviate inertia but may undermine initial search incentives. --
    Keywords: incentives in organizations,inertia,innovation,restructuring
    JEL: L2 M12 M54 O31 O32
    Date: 2010
  2. By: Coviello, Decio (University of Rome Tor Vergata); Ichino, Andrea (University of Bologna); Persico, Nicola (New York University)
    Abstract: We show that task juggling, i.e., the spreading of effort across too many active projects, decreases the performance of workers, raising the chances of low throughput, long duration of projects and exploding backlogs. Individual speed of job completion cannot be explained only in terms of effort, ability and experience: work scheduling is a crucial "input" that cannot be omitted from the production function of individual workers. We provide a simple theoretical model to study the effects of increased task juggling on the duration of projects. Using a sample of Italian judges we show that those who are induced for exogenous reasons to work in a more parallel fashion on many trials at the same time, take longer to complete similar portfolios of cases. The exogenous variation that identifies this causal effect is constructed exploiting the lottery that assigns cases to judges together with the procedural prescription requiring judges to hold the first hearing of a case no later than 60 days from filing.
    Keywords: individual production function, work scheduling, duration of trials
    JEL: J0 K0 M5
    Date: 2010–10
  3. By: Simon Alcouffe (ESC Toulouse - Ecole Supérieure de commerce de Toulouse); Nicolas Berland (DRM - Dauphine Recherches en Management - CNRS : UMR7088 - Université Paris Dauphine - Paris IX); Benjamin Dreveton (CEREGE - IAE de Poitiers); Moez Essid (GRIISG - ISG paris)
    Abstract: This paper draws on Environmental Management Accounting (EMA) literature and cost driver theory to study the nature and role of environmental cost drivers. More specifically, two types of operations related to environmental protection were empirically examined: the removal of asbestos from buildings and soil remediation. Findings from a series of case studies are presented and discussed. The paper contributes to existing literature in three ways: (1) by testing the adaptability of cost drivers typologies in a non-traditional, non-industrial setting (2) by proposing a more dynamic vision of the cost of social and environmental responsibility of the firm, and (3) by shedding light on the complex interrelationships of environmental cost drivers.
    Keywords: Environmental Management Accounting, Cost Driver, Social & Environmental Responsibility
    Date: 2010–05–19
  4. By: Guerra, Erick; Cervero, Robert
    Abstract: The cost of building rail transit facilities in the United States has skyrocketed in recent decades. Sections of Los Angeles’s Red Line subway cost more than $750 million per mile to build and even less pricey light-rail systems can cost more than $200 million per mile. Soaring capital investment costs are today’s biggest deterrent, both political and financial, to constructing new transit infrastructure. It stands to reason that high-cost transit projects need high ridership levels. Without sufficient numbers of riders and the fares they generate, new rail investments will inevitably incur huge deficits. Nor will environmental benefits accrue. Transit only reduces traffic congestion and tailpipe emissions when it draws former motorists – and particularly single-occupant drivers – to trains and buses. A system with few riders and a high price tag is a poor investment compared to a system with many riders and a low price tag. Through the investigation of more than 50 transit investment projects built in the U.S. since 1970, we find a strong correspondence between costs and ridership. As one would expect, capital costs and ridership are positively correlated. Moreover, both ridership and capital costs typically rise with job and population densities. By clustering trip ends near stops, concentrated development tends to average far more transit trips per square mile than less concentrated development. But density often increases construction costs as well – via increased costs for right-of-way acquisitions and building demolitions, more complicated route alignments, utility relocation expenses, and higher labor costs. This symbiotic relationship between density and both ridership and costs begs the question: are there densities that offer the most “bang for the buck†in terms of the number of riders for the investment costs? If so, what minimum densities should municipalities zone for around existing or planned stations in different settings or for different types of investments? These are among the most frequently asked questions in the urban planning field today – questions for which there are surprisingly few good answers or widely accepted benchmarks. This paper aims to help fill this knowledge gap.
    Keywords: fixed guideway transit, capital cost, ridership, transit-supportive density
    Date: 2010–08–01
  5. By: David Pérez-Castrillo; Nicolas Quérou
    Abstract: We propose a smooth multibidding mechanism for environments where a group of agents have to choose one out of several projects (possibly with the help of a social planner). Our proposal is related to the multibidding mechanism (Pérez-Castrillo and Wettstein, 2002) but it is "smoother" in the sense that small variations in an agent's bids do not lead to dramatic changes in the probability of selecting a project. This mechanism is shown to possess several interesting properties. Unlike in the study by Pérez Castrillo and Wettstein (2002), the equilibrium outcome is unique. Second, it ensures an equal sharing of the surplus that it induces. Finally, it enables reaching an outcome as close to effciency as is desired.
    Keywords: mechanism design, NIMBY
    JEL: D78 D72
    Date: 2010–11–05
  6. By: Conto, F.; La Sala, P.; Papapietro, P.
    Abstract: The introduction of the Integrated Projects of Food Chain requires the development of models capable of interpreting the dynamics of vertical and horizontal coordination between agents and the definition of the issues that most affect the ability of professionals to provide value added to goods and products to acquire in exchange a competitive advantage. With reference to the Basilicata region, the production structure of the region and the recent development of the Integrated Projects of Food Chain, this research has developed a new model of territorial organization of rural development. Now connect a new food chain model that combines theories of productivity, typical of contract economic, with those of social welfare and environmental economics: multifunctionality and biodiversity related to the needs of income and efficiency of companies in various stages of the food chain classic, in a context in which planning consultation is major determinant of local and regional development.
    Keywords: Food Chain, Rural Development, Integrated Project of Food Chain., Agribusiness, Agricultural and Food Policy, Community/Rural/Urban Development, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Labor and Human Capital,
    Date: 2010–10–27
  7. By: Armstrong, Mark; Vickers, John
    Abstract: We present a model in which a principal delegates the choice of project to an agent with different preferences. A project's characteristics are verifiable once presented to the principal, but the principal does not know how many projects are available to the agent. The principal chooses the set of projects which the agent can implement. Three frameworks are considered: (i) a static setting in which the set of available projects is exogenous to the agent but uncertain; (ii) a dynamic setting in which by expending effort the agent can affect the number of projects, and (iii) a dynamic setting in which the agent must wait for projects to materialize. The model is applied to the choice of welfare standard for merger policy.
    Date: 2010
  8. By: Theodosiou, Giorgos; Michailidis, Anastasios; Loizou, Efstratios; Chatzitheodoridis, Fotis
    Abstract: The main objective of the present paper is to reveal the most important reasons for admitting and supporting a local factor, such as a Union of Agricultural Cooperatives, by the rural residents of a typical Greek region. Moreover, the investigation of the possible dependence relationships among the socioeconomic variables of a market research, which refers to the willingness to purchase dairy products from the Cooperative (the dependent variable) and the independent variables, constitute the intention of the paper. From a methodological point of view, the study extends the employment of categorical multivariate methodologies into rural development issues. Interesting results are revealed from the segmentation of rural populations regarding the drivers of project adoption. In particular, the majority of the potential adopters of the local project face the same, more or less, challenges in supporting local cooperative projects and therefore in supporting their incomes. The survey results indicate the success of the investment project of the Union and the confidence of the local community in a local cooperative organization in supporting the development of the region.
    Keywords: Cooperative Investment, Market Research, Milk, Rural Region, Community/Rural/Urban Development, C420, D190, R510, H540,
    Date: 2010–08

This nep-ppm issue is ©2010 by Arvi Kuura. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.