nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2013‒09‒24
eight papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Parnu College - Tartu University

  1. Ranking Environmental Projects By Pannell, David J
  2. Innovation and the Financial Guillotine By Ramana Nanda; Matthew Rhodes-Kropf
  3. Behavioral economics and public sector reform : an accidental experiment and lessons from Cameroon By Raballand, Gael; Rajaram, Anand
  4. The organizational and regional determinants of inter-regional collaborations – Academic inventors as bridging agents By Friedrich Dornbusch; Sidonia von Proff; Thomas Brenner
  5. CCS – Failing to pass decision gates By Emhjellen, Magne; Osmundsen, Petter
  6. The social cost of capital: recent estimates for the EU countries By Massimo Florio; Emanuela Sirtori
  7. Academic patenting and the scientific enterprise: Lessons from a Japanese university. By René Carraz
  8. North Caucasus in 2012: Results and Risks By Irina Starodubrovskaya

  1. By: Pannell, David J
    Abstract: Environmental agencies and organisations face the challenge of deciding which of the many possible environmental projects they should support with their limited resources. Projects vary greatly in environmental benefits and costs, so selecting the best projects can make a major difference to the level of environmental benefits that can be generated for a given budget. Key principles for ranking environmental projects are presented and explained. A suitable formula to use as a metric for ranking projects is developed and explained. The formula accounts for environmental values, the effectiveness of management, time lags, behaviour change, various risks and various costs. The suggested formula includes a number of appropriate simplifications. A number of common mistakes to avoid are outlined.
    Keywords: environment, economics, project prioritisation, uncertainty, behaviour change, risk, environmental values, technical feasibility, Environmental Economics and Policy, D82, Q20, Q28,
    Date: 2013–09–05
  2. By: Ramana Nanda; Matthew Rhodes-Kropf
    Abstract: Our paper demonstrates that while failure tolerance by investors may encourage potential entrepreneurs to innovate, financiers with investment strategies that tolerate early failure endogenously choose to fund less radical innovations. Failure tolerance as an equilibrium price that increases in the level of experimentation. More experimental projects that don't generate enough to pay the price cannot be started. In equilibrium all competing financiers may choose to offer failure tolerant contracts to attract entrepreneurs, leaving no capital to fund the most radical, experimental projects. The tradeoff between failure tolerance and a sharp guillotine helps explain when and where radical innovation occurs.
    JEL: G24 G39 O31
    Date: 2013–08
  3. By: Raballand, Gael; Rajaram, Anand
    Abstract: Starting with the hypothesis that behaviors are the critical (and often overlooked) factor in public sector performance, this paper explores the notion of how behavioral change (and thus institutional change) might be better motivated in the public sector. The basis for this study is"an accidental experiment"resulting from the World Bank's operational engagement in Cameroon. In 2008, World Bank staff successfully concluded preparation on a project to support the Government of Cameroon to improve transparency, efficiency, and accountability of public finance management. The US$15 million project supported a number of ministries to strengthen a broad range of management systems and capacities. Independently and concurrently, other Bank staff initiated a low-profile, technical assistance project to improve performance in Cameroon's Customs, supported by a small trade facilitation grant of approximately US$300,000. One approach appears to have succeeded in initiating change while the other has signally failed. The two projects of different scale, scope and design in the same governance environment offer a very interesting natural experiment (unplanned but accidental for that reason) that allows insights into the nature of institutional change and the role of behavior and incentives and approaches that offer greater prospects for making reform possible. The paper confirms the value of using ideas from behavioral economics, both to design institutional reforms and to critically assess the approach to institutional reform taken by development agencies such as the World Bank.
    Keywords: Environmental Economics&Policies,Cultural Policy,National Governance,E-Business,Public Sector Economics
    Date: 2013–09–01
  4. By: Friedrich Dornbusch (Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI, Competence Center Policy and Regions); Sidonia von Proff (Economic geography and Location Research, Philipps-Universität Marburg); Thomas Brenner (Economic geography and Location Research, Philipps-Universität Marburg)
    Abstract: Collaboration over distance is difficult to maintain in innovation projects which require a great deal of regional collaboration. However, patent documents reveal that a number of inventor teams are able to overcome long distances. Earlier literature started to investigate factors, which increase the probability of long-distance innovation co-operation. The paper at hand is restricted to patents with academic participation, but takes a close look at two types of factors in the environment of the inventors: (1) the characteristics of the university that employs the academic inventor(s), and (2) the influence of the regional environment. Research on the impact of these factors is still underdeveloped in the literature. By considering only patents with at least one academic inventor we have a relatively homogeneous subset of patents and can concentrate on the external impacts. We find that a similar research area structure, a high absorptive capacity as well as a high start-up rate foster intra-regional collaboration. More TTO staff and a larger university lead to more long-distance collaboration while the industry orientation of the university does not exert an influence on the distance between inventors.
    Keywords: patents, research collaboration, academic patents, collaboration over distance, Germany
    JEL: O31 R12 L14
    Date: 2013–09–18
  5. By: Emhjellen, Magne (Petoro); Osmundsen, Petter (UiS)
    Abstract: .
    Keywords: Climate Projects; Decision Analysis; CO2
    JEL: A10
    Date: 2013–09–11
  6. By: Massimo Florio (DEAS, Universita' di Milano); Emanuela Sirtori (CSIL Centre for Industrial Studies)
    Abstract: Discounting enables to express future monetary or socio-economic effects in terms of present values when inter-temporal decisions are to be taken. In the context of the cost-benefit analysis, this allows for directly comparing net benefits expressed in terms of their net present values, and, subsequently, for aggregating them to obtain a single measure of the project value (the net present value). This paper deals with the social discount rate used to discount economic flows and estimate the investment’s economic profitability indicators. It discusses the two most popular approaches for estimating the social discount rate, namely the social rate of return on private investment and the social rate of time preference, as well as the important implications on present and future generations deriving from using one discount rate instead of another. An overview of the social discount rates applied in several countries worldwide is provided and country-specific social discount rates for some EU Member States are empirically estimated using the social rate of time preference approach.
    Keywords: Social discount rate, cost-benefit analysis, project evaluation
    JEL: D61 D63 D91 H43
    Date: 2013–09–09
  7. By: René Carraz
    Abstract: In this paper, we study the influence that academic patenting has on faculty members belonging to a research intensive Japanese uni- versity. We intend to contribute to the literature on both the use of patenting in academia and the influence it has on a researcher’s agenda setting. First, we document how recent policy changes have favored an increasing use of patents by faculty members in Japan. Then, us- ing two complementary set of data, cross-section and panel data, we focus our attention on three main dimensions: the effect of patenting on academic productivity measured in terms of publications and their quality; the role of financial factors; and the influence of peer effects. Our main findings are the following. First, we find that patenting and publishing were complementary activities in our two empirical settings. Moreover, we find that the output of colleagues working in the same department influences a researcher propensity to patent. The results show as well that the amount of contractual research funds received by a researcher is positively correlated with his/her number of patents, while the number of research grants - not the amount - is correlated to his/her patenting output. Finally, another interesting result concerns the influence of a researcher’s age on his/her propensity to patent.
    Keywords: Academic patenting, peer effects, intellectual property rights, technology transfer, university-industry relationships, Japanese innovation system.
    JEL: O3
    Date: 2013
  8. By: Irina Starodubrovskaya (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy)
    Abstract: In December 2012, the Russian government adopted the "Programme for the Development of the North Caucasus Federal District (NCFD) up to 2025" (hereinafter referred to as the Programme). The total funding up to 2020 was approved at a level of 2.55 trillion RUR, and it was determined that the state budget would provide 10% of the funds, while 90% should be made up from investor funds. Note that this proportion is roughly consistent with the principle of distribution of budgetary and non-budgetary finance adopted earlier for some of the projects implemented under the Programme. Thus, of the total costs of holiday resort construction projects in the North Caucasus, 60 billion rubles out of 510 billion rubles will be financed from the budget (through the project operator: Resorts of the North Caucasus JSC (with a 98% stake owned by the Government of the Russian Federation). The State has systematically demonstrated its goal to ensure the economic development of the North Caucasus mostly through investors. They are granted tax benefits, if they register in the new special economic zones (SEZ) created in the North Caucasus, as well as government guarantees on loans grant-ed on an individual competitive basis.
    Keywords: North Caucasus, investment, local communities, Dagestan Republic
    JEL: R10 R11 R12 R13 R14
    Date: 2013

This nep-ppm issue is ©2013 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.