nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2019‒11‒11
four papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Tartu Ülikool

  1. Cost overrun factors in construction industry: a case of Zimbabwe By Nyoni, Thabani
  2. How to increase the uptake of development interventions? Considering the Theory of Planned Behaviour By Kaplan, Lennart; Kuhnt, Jana; Richert, Katharina; Vollmer, Sebastian
  3. Commute Mode and Residential Location Choice By Andrea Craig
  4. Beratung als Instrument für mehr Naturschutz in der Landwirtschaft : Evaluierung des Beratungsangebotes im Verbundprojekt „Rotmilan – Land zum Leben“ By Böhner, Hanna; Schmidt, Thomas

  1. By: Nyoni, Thabani
    Abstract: Cost overruns (the amount of money by which actual costs exceed the initially approved costs) continue to characterize a plethora of construction projects, especially large projects. This is the reason why the hot debate in the construction industry on how to minimize cost overruns has been on for some time, especially among construction economists and engineers and yet the inability to complete construction projects within the budget remains a chronic problem worldwide. In Zimbabwe, it is now almost obvious that once a construction project has commenced; it will not be completed within the initial project budget. This study seeks to empirically determine cost overrun factors in the construction industry in Zimbabwe. From the analysis of the questionnaire, cost overrun factors were ranked using the Relative Importance Index (RII) technique. The overall results analysis indicate that poor estimation of original cost, lack of timeous reports during construction stage, corruption, construction productivity and contractual claims are amongst the top ten most important factors causing construction cost escalation. The study managed to come up with recommendations which are 7 – fold and are envisaged to help construction economists, managers and policy makers in initiating positive changes in the construction industry in Zimbabwe.
    Keywords: Construction cost; Construction industry; Relative Importance Index (RII); Zimbabwe
    JEL: L74
    Date: 2019–09–02
  2. By: Kaplan, Lennart; Kuhnt, Jana; Richert, Katharina; Vollmer, Sebastian
    Abstract: A crucial prerequisite for the success of development interventions is their uptake by the targeted population. We use the set-up of interventions conducted in Indonesia and Pakistan to investigate dis-/incentivising factors for a programme's uptake and support. Making use of a framework grounded on psychological theory - The Theory of Planned Behaviour - we consider three determinants for intervention uptake: personal attitudes; subjective norms (influenced by important others); and the perceived ease of performing the desired behaviour. As most development interventions are characterised by a cooperation between local and international agents, we investigate a potentially important dis-/incentivising factor further: the salience of the implementer's background. Our findings show that attitudes, subjective norms, and ease of use are indeed associated with increased uptake in our two culturally different settings. Conducting a framed field experiment in Indonesia, we go on to show that the study population in the Acehnese context exhibits higher levels of support for the project if the participation of international actors is highlighted. We find that previous experience with the respective actor is pivotal. To strengthen supportive behaviour by the target population for locally led projects, it is essential to foster local capabilities to create positive experiences. Hence, our results encourage development research and cooperation, first, to consider personal attitudes, subjective norms, and the perceived ease of use in the design of interventions in order to increase uptake. Second, and depending on the country context, implementers should consider previous experience with and attitude towards partners - either local or international - when aiming to achieve behavioural change.
    Keywords: Theory of Planned Behaviour,Framed Field Experiment,Implementation Research,Public Health
    Date: 2019
  3. By: Andrea Craig (Department of Economics, University of Windsor)
    Abstract: Public transportation infrastructure projects are major government investments that potentially affect not only travel mode choices, but residential location. To analyze the impacts of public transportation projects, accounting for households' residential location decisions, I develop a discrete choice model of commute mode and residential location. In this model, households have heterogeneous preferences for neighbourhood characteristics and commute costs. I estimate this model using microdata from Vancouver and commute times calculated with geographic information system (GIS) data. The mean-income household's willingness to pay to reduce commute time is fourteen dollars per hour and there is significant heterogeneity in this value across household income. Using the estimated model, I simulate households' residential and commute mode decisions under a proposed public transportation infrastructure project.
    Keywords: residential choice, commute mode choice, public transportation, counterfactual simulation
    JEL: R21 R41
    Date: 2019–10
  4. By: Böhner, Hanna; Schmidt, Thomas
    Abstract: From 2014 to 2018, within the scope of the "Rotmilan – Land zum Leben" joint project, more than 880 farms were given advice on the implementation of red-kite-friendly agriculture in eight regions of Germany. The main objective was to improve food availability for red kites on agricul-tural land. During the entire project period, it was possible to increase the area where measures were applied, from approx. 1,000 ha to more than 13,000 ha/year. Following an initial evaluation by Schmidt und Breitsameter (2015) on the advice given to farmers, the consultants and farm representatives – including those that did not receive any advice – were interviewed on their experiences and perspectives. The focus was on the motivation to participate in the counselling and its effects, as well as the expectations for nature conservation counselling. In summary, the following six core statements can be derived from the results: (1) Suitable funding programmes are a prerequisite for target-oriented implementation of nature conservation measures on agricultural land. (2) Advisory services promote the implementation of measures by attracting new farms to partic-ipate and increasing the amount of land involved. (3) Long-term and constant advisory services offered enable the continuous acquisition of new farms and the development of trust and cooperation. (4) Practical support in the implementation of measures, follow-up advice and the communica-tion of successful measures by the advisory institution are important components of the advisory activity. (5) Region-specific features of the advisory services are derived from the available funding measures, the characteristics of the advisory institution and advisors as well as the agricultural structure. (6) Advisory support promotes the quality of the implemented measures, thus the success of the measures cannot be measured solely on the basis of the area covered by the measures. The study reveals that advising farmers is an important instrument for the implementation of nature conservation measures. Advice transfers nature conservation expertise into land man-agement and sensitises the actors. Moreover, it offers support during the implementation of measures. The basics requirements for an effective advisory service, however, are sufficiently financed means for measures, adapted to both region-specific biodiversity targets and agricultur-al requirements.
    Keywords: Environmental Economics and Policy
    Date: 2019–11–01

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