nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2011‒04‒23
six papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Parnu College - Tartu University

  1. Exploring the Sources of Firm-level Scale Economies in R&D: Complementary assets, internal and external knowledge inflows, and inventor team size By NAGAOKA Sadao; OWAN Hideo
  2. Absorptive capacity in technological learning in clean development mechanism projects By Doranova, Asel; Costa, Ionara; Duysters, Geert
  3. Integrated assessment of public investment in land-use change to protect environmental assets in Australia By Pannell, David J.; Roberts, Anna M.; Park, Geoff; Curatolo, April; Marsh, Sally P.; Alexander, Jennifer
  4. Agency Contracts, Noncommitment Timing Strategies, and Real Options By Keiichi Hori; Hiroshi Osano
  5. Holdups and Holdouts: What do They Have in Common? By Thomas J. Miceli; Kathleen Segerson
  6. Telemedicine and primary health: The virtual doctor project Zambia By Mupela, Evans; Mustarde, Paul; Jones, Huw

  1. By: NAGAOKA Sadao; OWAN Hideo
    Abstract: This paper explores the sources of firm-level scale economies in R&D, based on unique project-level data from a new large-scale survey of Japanese inventors, matched with firm-level data. We focus on four sources: complementary assets, internal and external knowledge inflows, and inventor team size. Major findings include: (1) a larger firm tends to generate more patents from a research project but not more valuable patents, controlling for the objectives and the R&D investment (inventive efforts) for the project; (2) the sales of a firm rather than its R&D (or patent stocks) significantly affects the number of patents from the project, suggesting that the main source of such scale economy is not internal knowledge inflow but "appropriation advantage" of a large firm; (3) an inventor in a large firm often gains important knowledge for the project from internal knowledge inflow as well as from scientific literature. However, the performance of R&D-for which internal knowledge is important-tends to be low; and (4) the size of inventor teams increases with firm size and technological diversity. A larger team size is significantly associated with higher patent value and, as such, the size of the inventor team is one source of firm-level scale economies.
    Date: 2011–04
  2. By: Doranova, Asel (Technopolis Consulting Group); Costa, Ionara (UNU-MERIT); Duysters, Geert (Eindhoven University of Technology and Tilburg University)
    Abstract: Technology transfer in Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects of the Kyoto Protocol has become one of the important issues addressed both in policy agenda and by academic scholars. In many CDM project host countries, technology transfer is among the key provisions of sustainable development objectives of the CDM projects. This study is an effort to investigate CDM projects' related technology transfer process from the organizational learning perspective. The prerequisite for successful technology transfer and organizational technological learning is to foster technological capabilities (TC) of an organization. In this study we used data from our survey of the CDM project host organizations in four largest CDM host countries India, Brazil, Mexico and China. We assessed TC building progress and studied various characteristics of the organizations. The present paper focuses on absorptive capacity related determinants of technological capability building in the CDM projects. Absorptive capacity is a multidimensional concept thus we investigated the effect of the dimensions such as prior knowledge, personnel qualification, and training efforts. A strong positive association was established between prior knowledge and TC building; and less for qualification variable. Besides we proved a curvilinear relationship between prior knowledge and TC building outcomes.
    Keywords: Clean Development Mechanism, Technology transfer, technological capability building, technological learning, absorptive capacity
    JEL: O13 O19 O57
    Date: 2011
  3. By: Pannell, David J.; Roberts, Anna M.; Park, Geoff; Curatolo, April; Marsh, Sally P.; Alexander, Jennifer
    Abstract: A framework for comprehensive integrated assessment of environmental projects is developed and applied in partnership with a regional environmental body. The framework combines theory with practice, bringing a pragmatic and efficient approach to the rigorous assessment of projects for a large number of environmental assets in the north central region of the state of Victoria, Australia. Key features of the study include extensive participation of decision makers and stakeholders, integration of a comprehensive set of information about projects, explicit assessment of uncertainties and information gaps, and analysis of the most appropriate policy mechanism for each project. The process of applying the framework involved four steps: identification of around 300 important environmental assets in the region, filtering the list of assets to remove those that are less likely to provide opportunities for costeffective public investment, development and detailed assessment of projects for a subset of assets, and negotiation of funding for projects. The analysis assisted the environmental body to make strong business cases for a number of environmental projects, resulting in funding for those projects. Implications for land-use policy include that environmental projects vary widely in their cost-effectiveness, requiring careful targeting of funds if environmental benefits are to be maximised. Many existing environmental programs use simplistic analyses to support decision making, resulting in missed opportunities for substantially greater environmental benefits. Promoting adoption of improved analytical methods is very challenging, requiring changes in mind-set and culture in environmental organisations. Widespread adoption is unlikely unless funders create incentives by rewarding those project proponents who undertake rigorous and comprehensive project assessments that focus on achievement of environmental outcomes.
    Keywords: Environmental Economics and Policy, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy, Q20, Q50,
    Date: 2011–01–11
  4. By: Keiichi Hori (Faculty of Economics, Ritsumeikan University); Hiroshi Osano (Institute of Economic Research, Kyoto University)
    Abstract: Given an owner's noncommitment timing strategy and a manager's hidden action, we consider how the optimal compensation contract for the manager is designed and how the corresponding timing decisions to launch the project and replace the manager are determined. Using a real options approach, we show that in comparison with the firstbest case, the higher (lower)-quality project is launched later (at the same time as the first-best case), whereas the incumbent manager is replaced earlier. We also indicate that compared with the case of the owner’s commitment timing strategy and the manager's hidden action, the higher (lower)-quality project is launched later (at the same time as the first-best case), whereas the incumbent manager is (is not necessarily) replaced later if the hidden-action problem is severe enough (is not severe enough). Unlike the folklore result of the standard moral hazard model, severance pay may serve to minimize the compensation for the manager's loss of his option value caused by loss of corporate control by committing the owner to delaying replacement of the manager if the hidden-action problem is not too severe.
    Keywords: CEO turnover, executive compensation, noncommitment, real options, severance pay.
    JEL: D82 G30 G34 M51 M52
    Date: 2011–04
  5. By: Thomas J. Miceli (University of Connecticut); Kathleen Segerson (University of Connecticut)
    Abstract: The holdup and holdout problems arise in different contexts, but they share certain fundamental similarities that have not generally been recognized. In particular, both involve activities requiring an up-front, non-salvageable investment, and both require the investor to purchase an input, the price of which is determined by bargaining after the initial investment has been made. The effect of the up-front investment is to reduce the investor's bargaining power with the seller of the input. The anticipation of the outcome of this bargaining creates a disincentive for the investor to undertake the project in the first place, causing some efficient projects to be foregone.
    Keywords: Holdup problem, holdout problem, non-salvageable investments, eminent domain
    JEL: D23 K11 L14 L23
    Date: 2011–04
  6. By: Mupela, Evans (UNU-MERIT); Mustarde, Paul (Virtual Development UK); Jones, Huw (Virtual Development UK)
    Abstract: This paper is a commentary on a project application of telemedicine to alleviate primary health care problems in Lundazi district in the Eastern province of Zambia. The project dubbed 'The Virtual Doctor Project' will use hard body vehicles fitted with satellite communication devices and modern medical equipment to deliver primary health care services to some of the neediest areas of the country. The relevance and importance of the project lies in the fact that these areas are hard-to-reach due to rugged natural terrain and have very limited telecommunications infrastructure. The lack of these and other basic services makes it difficult for medical personnel to settle in these areas, which leads to an acute shortage of medical personnel. The paper presents this problem and how it is addressed by 'The Virtual Doctor Project', emphasizing that while the telemedicine concept is not new in sub-Saharan Africa, the combination of mobility and connectivity to service a number of villages 'on the go' is an important variation in the shift back to the 1978 Alma Ata principles of the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO). This overview of the Virtual Doctor Project in Zambia provides insight into both the potential for ICT, and the problems and limitations that any 'real-world' articulation of this technology must confront.
    Keywords: Telemedicine, Satellite, Primary health, Alma Ata
    JEL: O25 O41 O43 O47 F15 F43
    Date: 2011

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