nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2020‒01‒27
nine papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Tartu Ülikool

  1. Smart metering projects: an interpretive framework for successful implementation By Di Foggia, Giacomo
  2. Delegating Learning By Juan Escobar; Qiaoxi Zhang
  3. Renegotiations and Corruption in Infrastructure: The Odebrecht Case By Ronald Fischer; Nicolás Campos; Eduardo Engel; Alexander Galetovic
  4. Financing PPP Projects with PVR Contracts: Theory and Evidence from the UK and Chile By Eduardo Engel; Ronald Fischer; Alexander Galetovic; Jennifer Soto
  5. Future accessibility impacts of transport policy scenarios: equity and sensitivity to travel time thresholds for Bus Rapid Transit expansion in Rio de Janeiro By Pereira, Rafael Henrique Moreas
  6. Paying for affordable housing in different market contexts By Randolph, Bill; Troy, Laurence; Milligan, Vivienne; van den Nouwelant, Ryan; Hayward, Richard Donald
  7. Governing Public-Private Partnerships: The Problem of Low-Cost Decisions By Mause, Karsten
  8. La Red Eusumo: instrumento público al servicio los ODS en Galicia By María BASTIDA; Ana OLVEIRA
  9. Le mécanisme REDD+ et les projets pilotes à Madagascar : d’un idéal incitatif à la réalité des dispositifs de gestion By Laura Brimont; Maya Leroy

  1. By: Di Foggia, Giacomo
    Abstract: Purpose. We analyze a set of smart meters implementation projects and provide insights and recommendations to facilitate smart metering deployment strategies. Design/methodology/approach. Several significant projects are analyzed on different fronts: scale, technology, economics, and regulation using a common methodology to unfold patterns that constitute key components of successful smart meters diffusion. Findings. Key elements and controllable enabling patterns from Europe-wide SM implementation projects are identified together with drivers and barriers for patterns replication. Practical implications. We provide a framework considering different stakeholders that will help distribution system operators to accelerate and extend smart meters’ penetration. Originality/value. Based on the Meter-ON project (supported by the 7th Framework Program of the European Commission) we put valuable information on the same basis for comparison purposes to facilitate the large-scale deployment of smart meters in Europe.
    Date: 2018–09–01
  2. By: Juan Escobar; Qiaoxi Zhang
    Abstract: Learning is crucial to organizational decision making but often needs be delegated. We examine a dynamic delegation problem where a principal decides on a project with uncertain profitability. A biased agent, who is initially as uninformed as the principal, privately learns the profitability over time and communicates to the principal. We formulate learning delegation as a dynamic mechanism design problem and characterize the optimal delegation scheme. We show that private learning gives rise to the tradeoff between how much information to acquire and how promptly it is reflected in the decision. We discuss implications on learning delegation for distinct organizations. Key words: cheap talk.,commitment,deadlines,delays,delegation,private learning
    Date: 2019
  3. By: Ronald Fischer; Nicolás Campos; Eduardo Engel; Alexander Galetovic
    Abstract: In 2016, Brazilian construction firm Odebrecht was fined $2.6 billion by the US Department of Justice (DOJ). According to the plea agreement, between 2001 and 2016 Odebrecht paid $788 million in bribes in 10 Latin American and two African countries in more than 100 large projects. The DOJ estimated that bribe payments increased Odebrecht’s profits by $2.4 billion. Judicial documents and press reports on the Odebrecht case reveal detailed information on the workings of corruption in the infrastructure sector. Based on these sources we establish five facts. First, for projects where Odebrecht paid bribes, renegotiations amounted to 71.3 percent of initial investment estimates, compared with 6.5 percent for projects where Odebrecht paid no bribes. Second, Odebrecht’s bribes were less than one percent of a project’s final investment. Third, the profits Odebrecht obtained from bribes as well as its overall profits were relatively small: around 1 to 2 percent of sales. Fourth, the creation of the Division of Structured Operations (DSO) by Odebrecht in 2006 led to major reductions in the firm’s costs of paying bribes and recipients’ costs of hiding the ilegal proceeds. Fifth, following the creation of the DSO, Odebrecht’s sales multiplied tenfold in four years, while its profits remained relatively small. We build a model where firms compete for a project, anticipating a bilateral renegotiation in which their bargaining power will be larger if they pay a bribe. If cost dispersion among firms is small, profits are small in equilibrium even when bribes are paid. When one firm unilaterally innovates by making bribe payments more efficient, its market share increases substantially while profits, which depend on cost advantages and the magnitude of bribes, remain small. A parametrization using the DOJ’s data suggests that after the creation of the DSO, Odebrecht enjoyed an almost 70 percent cost advantage in bribing. JEL Codes: H54, H57, K42. Key words: auctions,bribes,corruption,fundamental transformation.,Infrastructure,lowballin g.,renegotiations
    Date: 2019
  4. By: Eduardo Engel; Ronald Fischer; Alexander Galetovic; Jennifer Soto
    Abstract: Risk allocation is an essential component of a successful public-private partnership contract financed with user fees. For many of these projects, demand risk is large and mostly exogenous. This suggests that we evaluate contract designs that do not force the concessionaire to bear risk it cannot manage. In this paper we study present-value-of-revenue (PVR) contracts, which have this property. Under a PVR contract, the regulator sets the discount rate and the tariff schedule and firms compete on the present value of tariff revenue. The lowest bid wins and the contract lasts until the winning firm collects revenue equal to its bid. We provide a theoretical analysis comparing debt financing under a fixed term concession and PVR. We show that, other things equal, debt is less risky under PVR, particularly against large systemic shocks, and therefore debt-to-capital ratios can be higher. In addition, we show that the view that PVR does not mesh easily with fixed maturity debt is wrong. The reason is that demand realizations are independent of contractual forms. Finally, we analyze the experience with PVR contracts, considering two early examples from the UK and close to thirty PVR contracts for highways and airports in Chile. We conclude that PVR contracts have been at least as attractive to lenders than their fixed term counterparts. We also provide evidence of better incentives under PVR, in particular, a significant reduction of contract renegotiations. JEL Codes: H44, R42. Key words: default risk,fixed term contract,flexible term contract,Infrastructure concession,prepayment risk,project finance.
    Date: 2019
  5. By: Pereira, Rafael Henrique Moreas
    Abstract: The accessibility impacts of transport projects ex-post implementation are generally evaluated using cumulative opportunity measures based on a single travel time threshold. Fewer studies have explored how accessibility appraisal of transport plans can be used to evaluate policy scenarios and their impacts for different social groups or examined whether the results of project appraisals are sensitive to the time threshold of choice. This paper analyzes how different scenarios of full and partial implementation of the TransBrasil BRT project in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) will likely impact the number of jobs accessible to the population of different income levels. The analysis is conducted under various travel time thresholds of 30, 60, 90 and 120 minutes to test whether the results are sensitive to the boundary effect of the modifiable temporal unit problem (MTUP). Compared to a partial operation scenario, the full implementation of TransBrasil that extends this corridor into the city center would lead to higher accessibility gains due to network effects of connecting this BRT to other transport modes. Nonetheless, the size of the accessibility impacts of the proposed BRT as well as its distribution across income classes would significantly change depending on the time threshold chosen for the accessibility analysis. Considering cut-off times of 30 or 60 minutes, both scenarios of TransBrasil would lead to higher accessibility impacts in general and particularly for low-income groups, moving Rio towards a more equitable transportation system. However, under longer thresholds of 90 and 120 minutes, an evaluation of this project would find much smaller accessibility gains more evenly distributed by income levels. The paper highlights how time threshold choice in cumulative opportunity measures can have important but overlooked implications for policy evaluation and it calls for further research on the MTUP in future transport and mobility studies.
    Date: 2018–03–23
  6. By: Randolph, Bill; Troy, Laurence; Milligan, Vivienne; van den Nouwelant, Ryan; Hayward, Richard Donald (Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI))
    Abstract: This study analysed recently completed affordable housing developments across Australia to ascertain how affordable housing project costs, revenues and subsidies interact. The research reveals the diverse funding arrangements adopted by providers, which have resulted in affordable housing project outcomes being driven by funding opportunities rather than by defined housing needs, and identified six key lessons about financing affordable housing.
    Date: 2018–02–13
  7. By: Mause, Karsten
    Abstract: In many cases, the expected efficiency advantages of public-private partnership (PPP) projects as a specific form of infrastructure provision did not materialize ex post. From a Public Choice perspective, one simple explanation for many of the problems surrounding the governance of PPPs is that the public decision-makers being involved in the process of initiating and implementing PPP projects (namely, politicians and public bureaucrats) in many situations make low-cost decisions in the sense of Kirchgässner. That is, their decisions may have a high impact on the wealth of the jurisdiction in which the PPP is located (most notably, on the welfare of citizen-taxpayers in this jurisdiction) but, at the same time, these decisions often only have a low impact on the private welfare of the individual decision-makers in politics and bureaucracies. The latter, for example, in many settings often have a low economic incentive to monitor/control what the private sector partners are doing (or not doing) within a PPP arrangement. The purpose of this paper is to draw greater attention to the problems created by low-cost decisions for the governance of PPPs. Moreover, the paper discusses potential remedies arising from the viewpoint of Public Choice and constitutional political economy.
    Keywords: Public-Private Partnerships, PPPs, Efficiency, Public Choice, Government Failure, Governance.
    JEL: D72 D73 H10 H54 H57 H82 K00 L32 L33
    Date: 2019–12
  8. By: María BASTIDA (Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Santiago de Compostela (Spain)); Ana OLVEIRA (Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Santiago de Compostela (Spain))
    Abstract: The number of organizations under the scope of Social Economy (SE) in Galicia (i.e., a Spanish autonomous community) has noticeably increased since 2005, particularly if we focus on cooperatives. This evolution has maintained even in the worst years of the economic crisis, differing from the behaviour that had other corporative models in the same period and region. The Eusumo Network seems have been critical for this development. This network is a public policy aimed to promote both cooperatives and SE. In its design, Eusumo’s main objective was to provide aid to set up new cooperative projects as a beneficial driver for employment; and also, to contribute to the consolidation of the existent companies in SE by improving their competitiveness. In this work it is argued that the Eusumo Network could be leading to raising a favourable ecosystem for Galician cooperatives, as well as other organizations in the SE sector, and that this effect could be munificent to the achievement of the Global Goals for Sustainable Development (SDG), especially those regarding quantitative and qualitative improvement of the employment (objectives number 8 and 9). To start with this argument, we provide a description of the relationship between SE and the SDG. Then, we continue to explain the Eusumo Network, by deeply explaining the model (namely, its aims and both managerial and financial processes). We also explore Eusumo’s role as a driver for the creation of organizations and provide a 360º assessment from stakeholders. Finally, we contribute some best practices to favour the dissemination of this tool among other contexts. The results of our work suggest that Eusumo has played a critical role in Galician’s micro-entrepreneurship. Taking into account the contextual reality of this autonomous community (high dispersion of population, hard aging, wide zones with depopulation, strong people’s concentration in urban zones, abandonment of the rural, for example-), our findings suggest a desirable improvement of the project. We are mindful that this tool can be beneficial on returning this trend. Besides, our results also shed light on an example of public policy that might contribute to the improvement of a favourable ecosystem to SE and, in turn, to the achievement of the SDGs in Galicia.
    Keywords: Social economy; Public politics; Employment; Eusumo Network; Entrepreneurship; Cohesion; Sustainable Development Goals – SDG
    JEL: E24 J18 J54 P13
    Date: 2019
  9. By: Laura Brimont (IDDRI - Institut du Développement Durable et des Relations Internationales - Institut d'Études Politiques [IEP] - Paris); Maya Leroy (MRM - Montpellier Research in Management - UM1 - Université Montpellier 1 - UM3 - Université Paul-Valéry - Montpellier 3 - UM2 - Université Montpellier 2 - Sciences et Techniques - UPVD - Université de Perpignan Via Domitia - Groupe Sup de Co Montpellier (GSCM) - Montpellier Business School - UM - Université de Montpellier, AgroParisTech)
    Abstract: Performance-based payments and incentives are the core principles of the REDD+ mechanism. This characteristic leads many authors to consider REDD+ as a transposition of payment for environmental services (PES) at the international level. This article aims to put into perspective the discourse of political innovation conveyed by the incentive principle of REDD+ with the reality of REDD+ pilot projects, which until now are the main expression of "REDD+ in the making". Using a theoretical approach of management arrangements, we deconstruct three REDD+ pilot projects implemented in Madagascar. Our analysis is organized in three steps: (i) we analyze the logic guiding the creation of the projects, considering their relationship to the carbon market and the doctrine of the environmental NGOs in charge with their management; (ii) we compare their territorial arrangements, trying to figure out whether different logics of creation imply different arrangements; and (iii) we describe the concrete modalities of the implementation of the projects for the local population, ascertaining the place of incentive tools. Our analysis point out a gap between the economic ideal type of REDD+ international mechanism and its national implementation as a constraining conservation tool in Madagascar. This gap is mainly due to the existing unbalanced power relations between the local population and the project managers. Far from having initiated a new area of conservation policies based on incentives, REDD+ in Madagascar mainly serves to fund existing coercive policies.
    Abstract: La principale innovation du mécanisme de réduction des émissions issues de la déforestation et de la dégradation des forêts (REDD+) est de proposer un mécanisme de conservation des forêts par l'incitation économique basé sur les résultats. L'objectif de cet article est de mettre en perspective ce discours d'innovation politique avec la réalité des projets pilotes REDD+, en interrogeant la place qu'y occupe finalement le principe d'incitation économique. Nous analysons les projets pilotes REDD+ à Madagascar en mettant en évidence les logiques managériales qui les sous-tendent, les dispositifs territoriaux qu'ils produisent, et les modalités de mise en œuvre auprès des populations locales. Ce travail montre les décalages entre le mécanisme REDD+, vu comme un instrument économique incitatif, et son opérationnalisation en différents dispositifs de gestion aux modalités souvent très contraignantes, voire coercitives. Ces dispositifs, selon la doctrine gestionnaire qu'ils portent, mobilisent ce mécanisme comme un instrument de financement des politiques de conservation préexistantes, ou comme une incitation de développement économique agricole qui bénéficie à une élite.
    Keywords: environment,management arrangements,REDD+,Madagascar,environnement,dispositifs de gestion
    Date: 2018–07

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