nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2014‒06‒14
eleven papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Parnu College - Tartu University

  1. Using design theory to characterize various forms of breakthrough R&D projects and their management: revisiting Manhattan & Polaris. By Sylvain Lenfle; Pascal Le Masson; Benoît Weil
  2. Wisdom or Madness? Comparing Crowds with Expert Evaluation in Funding the Arts By Ethan Mollick; Ramana Nanda
  3. Assessing the sustainability of activity systems to support households' farming projects By Méduline Terrier; Pierre Gasselin; Joseph Le Blanc
  4. Développement des territoires de projet. Quels enjeux pour les politiques rurales? By Marielle Berriet-Solliec; Aurélie Trouve
  5. Investment under Threat of Disaster By Thomas Gries; Natasa Bilkic
  6. InnovationCity Ruhr: A prime example for social and technological innovation By Adrian Götting
  7. Agreeing on robust decisions : new processes for decision making under deep uncertainty By Kalra, Nidhi; Hallegatte, Stephane; Lempert, Robert; Brown, Casey; Fozzard, Adrian; Gill, Stuart; Shah, Ankur
  8. Ten Years Later: Examining the Long-Term Impact of the California Safe Routes to School Program By Ragland, David R; Pande, Swati; Bigham, John; Cooper, Jill F
  9. El Sistema General de Regalías: ¿mejoró, empeoró o quedó igual? By Jaime Bonet; Joaquín Urrego
  10. Assessment of effectiveness of Chinese aid in competence building and financing development in Sudan By Nour S.
  11. Jacks-of-All-Trades? The Effect of Balanced Skills on Team Performance By Rosendahl Huber, Laura; Sloof, Randolph; van Praag, Mirjam

  1. By: Sylvain Lenfle (CRG - Centre de recherche en gestion - Polytechnique - X - CNRS : UMR7176); Pascal Le Masson (CGS - Centre de Gestion Scientifique - MINES ParisTech - École nationale supérieure des mines de Paris); Benoît Weil (CGS - Centre de Gestion Scientifique - MINES ParisTech - École nationale supérieure des mines de Paris)
    Abstract: In this paper we propose to revisit two emblematic projects, Manhattan and Polaris, with the models developed by design theory. In particular we demonstrate, relying on recent advances in design theory, how these major projects, traditionally presented as radical innovations, are in fact quite different. We show that this explains the different managerial strategies of this two cases : whereas Polaris focuses on the control of the design process, Manhattan exhibit a very original strategy, characterized by the simultaneous exploration of different solutions, to manage unforeseeable uncertainties. We therefore hope to demonstrate the fruitfulness of the dialogue between design theory and project management.
    Keywords: Design theory, project management, innovation
    Date: 2014–06–04
  2. By: Ethan Mollick (The Wharton School University of Pennsylvania); Ramana Nanda (Harvard Business School, Entrepreneurial Management Unit)
    Abstract: In fields as diverse as technology entrepreneurship and the arts, crowds of interested stakeholders are increasingly responsible for deciding which innovations to fund, a privilege that was previously reserved for a few experts, such as venture capitalists and grant-making bodies. Little is known about the degree to which the crowd differs from experts in judging which ideas to fund, and, indeed, whether the crowd is even rational in making funding decisions. Drawing on a panel of national experts and comprehensive data from the largest crowdfunding site, we examine funding decisions for proposed theater projects, a category where expert and crowd preferences might be expected to differ greatly. We instead find substantial agreement between the funding decisions of crowds and experts. Where crowds and experts disagree, it is far more likely to be a case where the crowd is willing to fund projects that experts may not. Examining the outcomes of these projects, we find no quantitative or qualitative differences between projects funded by the crowd alone, and those that were selected by both the crowd and experts. Our findings suggest that the democratization of entry that is facilitated by the crowdfunding has the potential to lower the incidence of “false negatives,” by allowing projects the option to receive multiple evaluations and reach out to receptive communities that may not otherwise be represented by experts.
    Date: 2014–05
  3. By: Méduline Terrier (Mutations des Activités, des Espaces et des Formes d'Organisation dans les Territoires Ruraux, INRA; Unité de recherche DTM Développement des territoires montagnards, Institut National de Recherche en Sciences et Technologies pour l'Environnement et l'Agriculture); Pierre Gasselin (Innovation et Développement dans l'Agriculture et l'Agro-alimentaire, INRA); Joseph Le Blanc (ADEAR Languedoc Roussillon)
    Abstract: This chapter aims to introduce the setting up of an evaluation tool assessing the sustainability of activity systems and supporting farming households' projects at the establishment stage. This chapter analyses three methods used to appreciate the farm sustainability and identifies not only their limits but also their contributions to our own methodology, at the level of complex activity systems in which farming production is combined with transformation, sales or outside activities. We propose to recognise two different contributions to sustainable agriculture: a farm-focused sustainability and an extended sustainability, which means a contribution to the sustainable development at a regional scale. These theoretical elements were regularly confronted with the analysis of advisors' practices and comprehensive surveys with households in Southern France, where an analysis was carried through a partnership with researchers and local actors. It produced a tool to appraise agricultural projects, with pluriactivity or without, distinguishing farm-focused and extended sustainability.
    Keywords: sustainability assessment, farm sustainability assessment methods, farming households' projects, pluriactivity, organisation scales, système d'activités, pluriactivité, durabilité de l'activité agricolefrance
    Date: 2013
  4. By: Marielle Berriet-Solliec (Centre d'Economie et de Sociologie Rurales Appliquées à l'Agriculture et aux Espaces Ruraux); Aurélie Trouve (Centre d'Economie et de Sociologie Rurales Appliquées à l'Agriculture et aux Espaces Ruraux, INRA)
    Abstract: Cet article part du constat du renforcement des formes de territorialisation dans le domaine du développement rural et en particulier des « territoires de projet », dont le programme européen Leader est emblématique. Il en propose une grille de lecture des objectifs et modalités d'intervention, reposant sur les deux critères d'efficacité économique et d'équité. Il croise une littérature théorique et empirique sur la territorialisation des politiques et des travaux de recherche en cours sur l'analyse des politiques de développement rural. In fine, ces territoires de projet apparaissent comme des vecteurs de renouvellement de l'efficacité économique, mais également de remise en cause de la fonction redistributrice de l'État à destination des espaces ruraux
    Abstract: This article highlights the territorialization of policies and presents a framework to analyse the rural development projects, Leader being a key program. An analytical framework of objectives and implementation is proposed, depending on two criteria: economical efficiency and equity. Theoretical and empirical litterature on policies territorialization, then research studies on rural development policies, are used. Finally, these rural development projects seem to favour a renewal of economic efficiency, but weakens the redistribution function of the State
    Keywords: territoire, LEADER, politique de développement rural, développement rural, politique publiqueterritoireprogramme leadereurope
    JEL: Q18 H50 R58
    Date: 2013
  5. By: Thomas Gries (University of Paderborn); Natasa Bilkic (University of Paderborn)
    Abstract: During the last 40 years the number and severity of economic, natural, and political disasters has significantly increased all over the world. Disasters are characterized by a highly uncertain frequency of occurrence and size of impact. Due to their relatively small probability, for a long time they were not regarded as an essential element of investment decisions. Although this has changed recently, especially in the context of specific applications in finance, a transfer to a general evaluation of disasters has not taken place yet. This paper shows how disastrous events of uncertain occurrence and uncertain size can be included in the most frequently used evaluation method, namely expected net present value (ENPV). We identify an Ito-Lévy Jump Diffusion process as an adequate stochastic process for this kind of phenomenon and determine how to account for such large uncertain events. We also illustrate that disregarding this phenomenon may easily lead to unprofitable investment behavior. Hence, disasters do have a huge impact on investment behavior and should be included into project evaluation.
    Keywords: disaster evaluation, large risk and uncertainty, non-marginal stochastic shocks, investment project evaluation
    JEL: D81 G11
    Date: 2014–02
  6. By: Adrian Götting (IET/CESNOVA, FCT-Universidade Nova de Lisboa and University Duisburg-Essen)
    Abstract: The project “InnovationCity Ruhr” deals with the reconstruction of the city of Bottrop with regard to energy saving measures. The aim is to make the city more environmental friendly in order to create a model for other industrial cities. Until the conclusion of the project in the year 2020, it is planned to change the surface of Bottrop in several positive ways. This paper focuses on the description of the project to give the reader an example of what exactly is done within the scope of InnovationCity Ruhr. Besides that, the link to the subject of sociology shall be given in order to show that the project is a prime example for social innovation.
    Keywords: Innovation, Innovation City, Ruhr, social innovation, model city Bottrop, energy efficiency
    JEL: O32 O38 R58
    Date: 2014–03
  7. By: Kalra, Nidhi; Hallegatte, Stephane; Lempert, Robert; Brown, Casey; Fozzard, Adrian; Gill, Stuart; Shah, Ankur
    Abstract: Investment decision making is already difficult for any diverse group of actors with different priorities and views. But the presence of deep uncertainties linked to climate change and other future conditions further challenges decision making by questioning the robustness of all purportedly optimal solutions. While decision makers can continue to use the decision metrics they have used in the past (such as net present value), alternative methodologies can improve decision processes, especially those that lead with analysis and end in agreement on decisions. Such"Agree-on-Decision"methods start by stress-testing options under a wide range of plausible conditions, without requiring us to agree ex ante on which conditions are more or less likely, and against a set of objectives or success metrics, without requiring us to agree ex ante on how to aggregate or weight them. As a result, these methods are easier to apply to contexts of large uncertainty or disagreement on values and objectives. This inverted process promotes consensus around better decisions and can help in managing uncertainty. Analyses performed in this way let decision makers make the decision and inform them on (1) the conditions under which an option or project is vulnerable; (2) the tradeoffs between robustness and cost, or between various objectives; and (3) the flexibility of various options to respond to changes in the future. In doing so, they put decision makers back in the driver's seat. A growing set of case studies shows that these methods can be applied in real-world contexts and do not need to be more costly or complicated than traditional approaches. Finally, while this paper focuses on climate change, a better treatment of uncertainties and disagreement would in general improve decision making and development outcomes.
    Keywords: Climate Change Economics,Climate Change Mitigation and Green House Gases,Science of Climate Change,Transport Economics Policy&Planning,Debt Markets
    Date: 2014–06–01
  8. By: Ragland, David R; Pande, Swati; Bigham, John; Cooper, Jill F
    Abstract: California was the first state to legislate a Safe Routes to School (SR2S) program under Assembly Bill AB 1475 (1999). SR2S funds construction projects that make it safer for children to walk/bicycle to school and encourage a greater number of children to choose these modes of travel for the school commute. The main goal of this project was to assess the long-term impact of program-funded engineering modifications on walking/bicycling levels and on safety. Evaluation of improvements was determined using a targeted method of determining the countermeasures to result in safety and mode shift. Major results indicate that safety of pedestrians increased within 250 feet of an infrastructure improvement, such as a sidewalk. There was also evidence of mode shift near improvements, as well. Positive results for safety and mobility, as well as improved data collection for funded programs, should make Safe Routes to School programs competitive among other transportation needs. 
    Keywords: Engineering, Medicine and Health Sciences
    Date: 2014–01–14
  9. By: Jaime Bonet; Joaquín Urrego
    Abstract: Este documento revisa las asignaciones presupuestales del primer año de vigencia del Sistema General de Regalías (SGR). Los resultados muestran elementos positivos en materia de distribución y equidad territorial de las regalías. Sin embargo, existen algunos aspectos sobre la aprobación de proyectos que atrasan la ejecución y no necesariamente aseguran que los seleccionados sean los más adecuados. Además, no hay evidencia que el sistema involucre un análisis de la sostenibilidad de las inversiones y se observa cierta pereza fiscal en algunos departamentos, especialmente aquellos que antes no recibían recursos de regalías. Finalmente, el estudio del departamento del Cesar muestra que en algunos casos las regalías se siguen invirtiendo en proyectos de infraestructura sin un impacto claro y cuya sostenibilidad no está asegurada. A pesar que este tipo de inversiones era una de las motivaciones que llevó a la creación del SGR, estos siguen dominando la asignación de recursos******ABSTRACT: This paper reviews the budget allocations of the first year of the General System of Royalties (SGR). The results show positive elements in the distribution and territorial equity in the new system. However, there are some aspects of project approval that delay implementation and do not necessarily ensure that those selected are the most appropriate. Furthermore, there is no evidence that the system involves an analysis of the sustainability of investments and there is certain fiscal laziness observed in some departments, especially those who did not receive royalties before. Finally, the study of Cesar shows that in some cases the royalties are still investing in infrastructure projects without a clear impact and whose sustainability is not assured. Although this type of investment was one of the motivations that led to the creation of the SGR, these continue to dominate the allocation of resources.
    Keywords: regalías, SGR, Cesar, equidad territorial.
    JEL: H71 H72 R58
    Date: 2014–01–31
  10. By: Nour S. (UNU-MERIT)
    Abstract: Assessment of effectiveness of Chinese aid in competence building and financing development in Sudan by S. Nour abstract This paper discusses the effectiveness of Chinese aid for competence building and financing development in Sudan using new primary data at the micro level. We find that Chinese aid and loans to Sudan caused mixed positive-negative impacts. The positive impact is competence building and providing alternative complementary sources of finance to complement domestic capital and financing development projects; the negative impact is increasing Sudanese debts to China. We find that the effectiveness of Chinese aid to Sudan is undermined by offering aid tied to trade, FDI and the importance of oil to the Chinese economy. Despite the global economic crisis, China has continued to offer tied aid to maintain access to oil in Sudan. Despite a long period of economic sanctions, Sudan was able to grow thanks to the robust and increasing intensification of special economic relations with China which relaxed the development finance constraint. From the perspective of new approaches to financing development, our findings imply that even when a country is facing binding political and economic sanctions, it can still proceed with competence building and finance a high growth strategy if it is endowed with natural resources and a partner that is in need of such resources. In addition to aid in the form of financial capital, Chinese aid and development assistance include technical assistance in the form of scholarships for training and education. The outcome of Chinese aid directed towards capacity building in Sudan implies that the majority of scholarships provided for specialization fields of Engineering, followed by Science and related fields, and finally Arts, Social Science and related fields respectively, and provided for PhD degree, followed by MSc degree, research and training respectively over the period 1999-2013. Keywords Competence building; financing development; aid effectiveness; China; Sudan.
    Keywords: Foreign Aid; International Linkages to Development; Role of International Organizations;
    JEL: F35 O19
    Date: 2014
  11. By: Rosendahl Huber, Laura (University of Amsterdam); Sloof, Randolph (University of Amsterdam); van Praag, Mirjam (Copenhagen Business School)
    Abstract: Previous empirical studies have shown that solo entrepreneurs benefit from having balanced skills: Jacks-of-All-Trades (JATs) are better entrepreneurs than specialists are. Nowadays however, the majority of entrepreneurs start up and run ventures together in teams. In this paper we test whether the effect of more balanced skills is also positive in a team of entrepreneurs. We also explore whether (a lack of) individual balanced skills can be substituted by combining the skills of various specialists within one team. Our field experiment studies teams of children participating in an entrepreneurship education program. Based on pupils' precisely measured level of verbal and mathematical ability, we exogenously compose 179 teams separated into four different types: JAT teams, math-specialist teams, verbal-specialist teams and mixed specialist teams. Our results show that balanced skills are beneficial to team performance, and that it is hard to substitute individual balanced skills by combining different specialists within one team.
    Keywords: skill balance, team diversity, team performance, entrepreneurship, field experiment
    JEL: C93 D83 J24 L25 L26 M13
    Date: 2014–06

This nep-ppm issue is ©2014 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.
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