nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2013‒05‒11
eight papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Parnu College - Tartu University

  1. Bending the Arc of Innovation: Public Support of R&D in Small, Entrepreneurial Firms By Link, Albert N.; Scott, John T.
  2. Water Resources Planning under Climate Change: A “Real Options” Application to Investment Planning in the Blue Nile By Jeuland, Marc; Whittington, Dale
  3. Energy intensive infrastructure investments with retrofits in continuous time : effects of uncertainty on energy use and carbon emissions By Framstad, Nils Christian; Strand, Jon
  4. Foreign aid and decentralization: Policies for autonomy and programming for responsiveness By Dickovick, J. Tyler
  5. Aid for agriculture and rural development: A changing landscape with new players and challenges By Chimhowu, Admos
  6. Strengthening Innovation in the United States By David Carey; Christopher Hill; Brian Kahin
  7. The challenge fund aid modality: Assessing the potential for tackling gender challenges in development By Gulrajani, Nilima
  8. Models of public service reform : a problem-solving approach By McCourt, Willy

  1. By: Link, Albert N. (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics); Scott, John T. (Dartmouth College)
    Abstract: In this paper we overview a key national program that supports the development of new technology and innovation in small, entrepreneurial firms. The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program was established by the Small Business Innovation Development Act of 1982. We conclude from our years of study of the SBIR program that it is indeed bending the arc of innovation. The majority of firms that received SBIR project funding reported that they would not have undertaken the project in the absence of SBIR support. And, it seems clear to us that the SBIR support has had a positive impact on the employment trajectory of firms and on their ability to commercialize innovations resulting from their funded research.
    Keywords: SBIR program; innovation; technology; entrepreneurship
    JEL: L26 O31 O32 O38
    Date: 2013–05–02
  2. By: Jeuland, Marc; Whittington, Dale
    Abstract: This article develops a “real options” approach for planning new water resources infrastructure investments and their operating strategies in a world of climate change uncertainty. The approach is illustrated with an example: investments in large new multipurpose dam alternatives along the Blue Nile in Ethiopia. The approach incorporates flexibility in design and operating decisions – the selection, sizing, and sequencing of new dams, and reservoir operating rules. The analysis relies on a simulation model that includes linkages between climate change and system hydrology, and tests the sensitivity of the economic outcomes of investments in new dams to climate change and other uncertainties. Not surprisingly, the results for the Blue Nile basin show that there is no single investment plan that performs best across a range of plausible future climate conditions. The value of the real options framework is that it can be used to identify dam configurations that are both robust to poor outcomes and sufficiently flexible to capture high upside benefits if favorable future climate and hydrological conditions arise. The real options approach could be extended to explore design and operating features of development and adaptation projects other than dams.
    Keywords: ile Basin, real options, dams, climate adaptation, cost-benefit analysis, Ethiopia, Monte Carlo simulation
    JEL: D81 O22 Q25 Q42 Q54
    Date: 2013–03–06
  3. By: Framstad, Nils Christian; Strand, Jon
    Abstract: Energy-intensive infrastructure may tie up fossil energy use and carbon emissions for a long time after investments, making the structure of such investments crucial for society. Much or most of the resulting carbon emissions can often be eliminated later, through a costly retrofit. This paper studies the simultaneous decision to invest in such infrastructure, and retrofit it later, in a model where future climate damages are uncertain and follow a geometric Brownian motion process with positive drift. It shows that greater uncertainty about climate cost (for given unconditional expected costs) then delays the retrofit decision by increasing the option value of waiting to invest. Higher energy intensity is also chosen for the initial infrastructure when uncertainty is greater. These decisions are efficient given that energy and carbon prices facing the decision maker are (globally) correct, but inefficient when they are lower, which is more typical. Greater uncertainty about future climate costs will then further increase lifetime carbon emissions from the infrastructure, related both to initial investments, and to too infrequent retrofits when this emissions level is already too high. An initially excessive climate gas emissions level is then likely to be worsened when volatility increases.
    Keywords: Climate Change Mitigation and Green House Gases,Climate Change Economics,Transport Economics Policy&Planning,Energy Production and Transportation,Environmental Economics&Policies
    Date: 2013–04–01
  4. By: Dickovick, J. Tyler
    Abstract: Donor support for decentralization comes in two main categories: recommendations at the policy level and project activities at the programming level. At the policy level, donors promote decentralization by recommending greater autonomy for subnational act
    Keywords: decentralization, development, local governance, Africa
    Date: 2013
  5. By: Chimhowu, Admos
    Abstract: This paper analyses the way aid for agriculture and rural development in the global south has changed over time. It finds three key shifts. First, a change in funding priority that has seen aid commitments move to the social sectors. Second is a shift in
    Keywords: aid agriculture, rural development, high-impact investments, venture philanthropy
    Date: 2013
  6. By: David Carey; Christopher Hill; Brian Kahin
    Abstract: The US innovation system has many strengths, including world class research universities and firms that thrive in innovation-intensive sectors. However, fissures have begun to appear, notably in the areas of human capital development, the patent system and manufacturing activity, while public investments in R&D and research universities are at risk of being curtailed by budget cuts. Revitalizing the dynamism of innovation has become a priority for US policymakers. To this end, it is important that federal and state governments sustain financial support for knowledge creation. The US workforce’s skills will need to be upgraded, especially in STEM fields, and measures taken to provide more favourable framework conditions for developing advanced manufacturing in the United States. While the recent patent reform is a big step in the right direction, patent reform needs to be taken further by ensuring that the legal standards for granting injunctive relief and damages awards for patent infringement reflect realistic business practices and the relative contributions of patented components of complex technologies.<P>Renforcer l'innovation aux États Unis<BR>Le système d’innovation des États-Unis possède de nombreux atouts, en particulier des universités de recherche de rang mondial et des entreprises dynamiques dans les secteurs à forte intensité d’innovation. Cependant, certaines failles commencent à apparaître, notamment en termes de formation du capital humain, de brevets et d’activité manufacturière, et les investissements publics en faveur de la R-D et des universités de recherche risquent de pâtir des réductions budgétaires. Pour les décideurs américains, réactiver la dynamique de l’innovation est devenu une priorité. À cette fin, il importe que le gouvernement fédéral et les exécutifs des États continuent de soutenir financièrement la création de connaissances. Il faudrait améliorer le niveau de qualification de la main-d’oeuvre, en particulier dans le domaine des sciences, de la technologie, de l’ingénierie et des mathématiques (STIM), et prendre des mesures pour assurer la mise en place de conditions-cadres plus favorables au développement de la fabrication de pointe. La récente réforme des brevets représente un grand pas dans la bonne direction, mais elle doit être poursuivie en garantissant qu’en cas d’atteinte à un brevet, les critères juridiques sur lesquels se fondent les tribunaux pour prendre des décisions conservatoires et accorder des dommages-intérêts reflètent les pratiques effectives des entreprises et les contributions relatives des composantes brevetées des technologies complexes.
    Keywords: innovation, entrepreneurship, patents, R&D, green innovation, knowledge spillovers, MFP growth, complex technologies, cluster, advanced manufacturing, tertiary education attainment, STEM, immigration Visa, R&E tax credit, innovation, entrepreneuriat, brevets, R&D, l'innovation verte, crédits d'impôt pour R&E, externalités de connaissances, croissance de la productivité multifactorielle (PMF), pôles d'entreprises, activités manufacturières de pointe, niveau d'éducation tertiaire, STIM, visa d'immigration
    JEL: I2 O3
    Date: 2012–11–22
  7. By: Gulrajani, Nilima
    Abstract: This paper compares the use of Challenge Funds by the UK.s Department for International Development and Sweden.s International Development Agency to address gender challenges in development. Challenges Funds are meant to bring the interests of business an
    Keywords: foreign aid, challenge funds, gender, aid effectiveness, bottom of the pyramid, business and development
    Date: 2013
  8. By: McCourt, Willy
    Abstract: This paper identifies six models of public service reform that have been practiced in developing countries over the past half-century. It critically reviews their implementation, discussing them as attempted solutions to problems that have arisen in the policy process in different countries. The models are: public administration; decentralization; pay and employment reform; New Public Management; integrity and corruption reforms; and"bottom-up"reforms. The paper seeks an explanation for their disappointing performance in the political economy of reform, with an emphasis on how learning from failure can be the paradoxical foundation of future success.
    Keywords: National Governance,Public Sector Economics,Public Sector Management and Reform,Public Sector Corruption&Anticorruption Measures,Public Sector Expenditure Policy
    Date: 2013–04–01

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