nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2018‒08‒13
five papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Tartu Ülikool

  1. Accountability in Complex Procurement Tenders By Bernard Caillaud; Ariane Lambert-Mogiliansky
  2. The Rise of NGO Activism By Julien Daubanes; Jean-Charles Rochet
  3. The Dynamics of Technology Transfer in a Catching-up Innovation System: Empirical Evidence and Actor Perceptions from the Estonian Biotechnology Sector By Margit Kirs; Veiko Lember; Erkki Karo
  4. When Does Advice Impact Startup Performance? By Aaron Chatterji; Solène Delecourt; Sharique Hasan; Rembrand M. Koning
  5. Patient and impatient capital: time horizons as market boundaries By Avner Offer

  1. By: Bernard Caillaud (PSE - Paris School of Economics, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Ariane Lambert-Mogiliansky (PSE - Paris School of Economics, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: This paper addresses the issue of favoritism at the design stage of complex procurement auctions. A local community of citizens wants to procure a complex good or project and lacks the ability to translate its preferences into operational technical specifications. This task is delegated to a public officer who may collude with one of the firms at the design stage of the procurement auction in exchange of a bribe. Assuming that it is prohibitively costly to provide a justification for many aspects, we investigate two simple accountability mechanisms that ask the public officer to justify one aspect of the project, with the threat of being punished if he fails: a random challenge mechanism and an alert-based mechanism that requires justifying one aspect on which the rivals of the winning contractor send a red ag. Relying on losing contractors enables the community to deter favoritism significantly more easily than the random challenge procedure as it allows to use information that is shared by potential contractors in the industry. The level of penalty needed to fully deter corruption is lower, independent of the complexity of the project and depends on the degree of differentiation within the industry. Below this threshold, favoritism occurs in some states of nature and we characterize and compare the different equilibrium patterns of corruption under both mechanisms. A more elaborate example suggests that the alert-based mechanism tends to lead to more standard specifications of projects.
    Keywords: Procurement auctions,favoritism,accountability mechanism,D73, D82, H57
    Date: 2017–06
  2. By: Julien Daubanes (ETH Zurich); Jean-Charles Rochet (University of Zurich, University of Toulouse I, and Swiss Finance Institute)
    Abstract: WActivist NGOs increasingly oppose industrial projects that were approved by public regulators. We develop a model that explains this phenomenon. We consider a potentially-harmful industrial project that is subject to regulatory approval. The regulator can be influenced by the industry, and may approve the project even though it is harmful. However, an NGO may oppose it. We characterize the circumstances under which NGO opposition occurs and under which it is socially beneficial. The theory explains the role that NGOs have assumed in the last decades, and has implications for the social legitimacy of NGO activism and the appropriate degree of transparency of industrial activities.
    Keywords: NGO activism, Public regulation, Industry influence, Private politics, Transparency
    JEL: D02 D74 D82
    Date: 2018–01
  3. By: Margit Kirs; Veiko Lember; Erkki Karo
    Abstract: Based on the case studies from the Estonian biotechnology sector, we explore the development trajectories of academic business ventures in a country where the formal and linear model of technology transfer and commercialization have been at the core of the innovation policy, but the exploitation and diffusion of knowledge generated through formal university-industry linkages has remained limited. We show that even in the area of biotechnology, where one could expect this model of technology transfer to be most visible, the model is not functioning in practice and the policy has had limited impact. The more systemic evolutionary approach to innovation and knowledge diffusion seems to better grasp the contextual aspects of technology transfer in catching-up context, while also providing more informative input for policy-making.
    Date: 2017–11
  4. By: Aaron Chatterji; Solène Delecourt; Sharique Hasan; Rembrand M. Koning
    Abstract: Why do some entrepreneurs thrive while others fail? We explore whether the advice entrepreneurs receive about people management influences their firm's performance. We conducted a randomized field experiment in India with 100 high-growth technology firms whose founders received in-person advice from other entrepreneurs who varied in their managerial style. We find that entrepreneurs who received advice from peers with an active approach to managing people–instituting regular meetings, setting goals consistently, and providing frequent feedback to employees–grew 28% larger and were 10 percentage points less likely to fail than those who got advice from peers with a passive people-management approach two years after our intervention. Entrepreneurs with MBAs or accelerator experience did not respond to this intervention, suggesting that formal training can limit the spread of peer advice.
    JEL: M1 M12 M13 O32
    Date: 2018–07
  5. By: Avner Offer
    Abstract: Since the 1980s privatisation and outsourcing have been promoted on grounds of efficiency and fiscal convenience. The argument here is that the appropriate choice between business and public enterprise is determined by the interaction between two time horizons, a financial time horizon and a project time horizon. The prevailing interest rate defines a credit time horizon. Among project appraisal methods, the payback period defines a unique temporal outer bound for private sector break-even. Net present value break-evens (and other forms of business credit) are always shorter. Any project which has a break-even longer than the payback period cannot be funded by business alone. Long-term projects encounter uncertainty and attempt to control it by means of rigid contracts, which also lead to inferior outcomes. This analysis accounts for historical patterns of enterprise. It also provides normative guidance. Public-private partnerships for infrastructure development intended to overcome credit time boundaries. They have given rise to inefficiency and corruption and are currently in decline. It is possible to overcome the temporal boundary with a ‘franchise’ i.e. protection from uncertainty provided by social and government agencies. This allows longer credit break-evens, but at a cost in competitive efficiency. It is also prone to corruption. The time-horizon model undermines the standard argument for market superiority. It turns Hayek on his head: it is financial markets that require certainty, whereas social and public agencies manage in its absence.
    JEL: H4 H43 H44 L32 L33 L38
    Date: 2018–08–01

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