nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2020‒10‒12
five papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Tartu Ülikool

  1. Tailoring Leadership to the Phase-Specific Needs of Large Scale Research Infrastructures By David Eggleton
  2. The impact of land use effects in infrastructure appraisal By Eliasson, Jonas; Savemark, Christian; Franklin, Joel
  3. Revealing the dominant discourses of stakeholders towards natural resource management in Port Resolution, Vanuatu, using Q-method By Buckwell, Andrew; Fleming, Christopher; Muurmans, Maggie; Smart, James; Mackey, Brendan
  4. Latent Technology as an Outcome of R&D By Cunningham, James; Link, Albert
  5. Lindahl vs. Lindahl: Optimal siting and sizing of a noxious facility By Ferraz, Eduardo; Mantilla, César

  1. By: David Eggleton (Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU), University of Sussex. September, 2020)
    Abstract: ’Large Scale Research Infrastructures’ (LSRIs), a subcategory of megaprojects which incorporate a characteristic of a high or ‘super high’ level of technological uncertainty, are often undertaken as cooperative projects with long lead times by one or more national governments. A lack of research into the effect of the LSRI project’s lifecycle on the research organisation is apparent, particularly when scientists and engineers exercise freedom to organise the project directly. Two case studies used senior leadership selection as proxy for the LSRI project lifecycle using a contingency theory framework. These were the Tevatron (Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, USA) and the Large Hadron Collider at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN). This LSRI lifecycle is mapped onto lifecycles used in theory and in policy. Previous research did not detect that these projects become institutionalised, so influencing the selection of new research organisation senior leadership according to its needs at that stage of its lifecycle. This represents something of a novelty as most contingency theory work is theoretical with few attempts to use it as a conceptual framework for empirical evidence. The findings indicate a second new understanding, that while the literature characterises a leadership style transition from democratic to authoritarian as the project progresses, LSRIs exhibit a reverse transformation, probably as a product of the characteristically high level of organisational technical competence. The construction of LSRIs maps better onto the traditional project lifecycle and the National Science Foundation’s large facility lifecycle than onto other lifecycles. There is a policy opportunity to commission a ‘generational survey’ upon the completion of an LSRI, to understand the characteristics of the ‘next big machine’. The author would like to thank the CERN Archives Service (Geneva, Switzerland) for granting access to restricted sections of the CERN Archives, and also the Fermilab History and Archives Project (Batavia, IL, USA) for access to the Fermilab Archives, and both for assisting with the creation of interviewee pools. This version of the paper benefitted from the advice and comments of the SPRU Working Papers Series (SWPS) Editors and Reviewers including Katherine Lovell. The original research could not have been possible without the advice and support of my PhD supervisors: Ben Martin, the late Puay Tang, and Martin Meyer. Thanks also to my PhD viva examiners, Josh Siepel and Andy Davies, for their valuable comments and advice. This research was supported by a Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) grant from the University of Sussex.
    Keywords: LSRI · research infrastructure · megaproject · project management · lifecycle · leadership
    Date: 2020–09
  2. By: Eliasson, Jonas; Savemark, Christian; Franklin, Joel
    Abstract: When benefits of proposed infrastructure investments are forecasted, residential location is usually treated as fixed, since very few operational transport models are able to forecast residential relocation. It has been argued that this may constitute a source of serious error or bias when evaluating and comparing the benefits of proposed infrastructure investments. We use a stylized simulation model of a metropolitan region to compare calculated benefits for a large number of infrastructure investments with and without taking changes in residential location into account. In particular, we explore the changes in project selection when assembling an optimal project portfolio under a budget constraint. The simulation model includes endogenous land prices and demand for residential land, heterogeneous preferences and wage offers across residents, and spillover mechanisms which affect wage rates in zones. The model is calibrated to generate realistic travel patterns and demand elasticities. Our results indicate that ignoring residential relocation has a small but appreciable effect on the selected project portfolio, but only a very small effect on achieved total benefits.
    Keywords: Cost-benefit analysis, land use, wider impacts, land use/transport interaction models.
    JEL: R14 R40 R42
    Date: 2020
  3. By: Buckwell, Andrew; Fleming, Christopher; Muurmans, Maggie; Smart, James; Mackey, Brendan
    Abstract: Communities in Pacific small island states face a range of threats to their management of natural resources, exacerbated by change-related risks, all against the backdrop of social and economic transition. Ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) describes a class of interventions that manage climatic change-related risks, which is argued to be relevant for such communities. Understanding local constraints and enabling conditions for EbA implementation is important in informing project implementation. We used Q-methodology to reveal principle discourses within a community in Vanuatu and among stakeholders with knowledge of the challenges confronting that community. We analysed stakeholders to determine whether particularly-held discourses correlate with demographic attributes. Our research revealed three principle discourses we called Strong Kastom, Kastom + Health and Tentative Modernity. Perspectives from each discourse need to be taken into account when identifying and evaluating adaptation options. Our results suggest adaptation interventions are more likely to resonate with the community if they support customary natural resource management, reflect traditional knowledge, provide opportunities for generating income, and promote gender equity in decision-making. Our results also suggest external practitioners do not necessarily consider income generation as being important to community livelihoods. Ignoring a community’s perspectives, values, and priorities risks undermining the viability of EbA projects.
    Keywords: Environmental Economics and Policy
    Date: 2020–09–16
  4. By: Cunningham, James (Northumbira University); Link, Albert (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: This paper focuses on a situation in which a firm decides to sell its non-commercialized technology to another firm rather than commercialize it (a latent entrepreneurial firm), and the other firm then adopts the appearance of an emergent entrepreneur. Using U.S. project data from firms funded through the U.S. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, we find using a qualitative choice model that firms that do not commercialize their newly developed SBIR-funded technology have a greater probability of selling their technology to another firm than do firms that do commercialize. We also identify other covariates with the probability that such a firm will sell their technology.
    Keywords: Latent entrepreneurship; Emergent entrepreneurship; SBIR; Commercialization;
    JEL: O32 O33 O38
    Date: 2020–09–29
  5. By: Ferraz, Eduardo; Mantilla, César
    Abstract: Providing a noxious facility poses two problems previously unexplored together: where to locate it and how large it should be. We propose a mechanism combining some market-like properties with a modified second-price auction. The mechanism selects a host, a facility size, a compensation for hosting the project, and determines how the compensation and building costs are split among the non-hosts. Regardless of the selected host, any equilibrium outcome of this mechanism is a Lindahl allocation. If each community bids truthfully for becoming the host-a strategy which no community has incentives to deviate-the selected Lindahl allocation is globally optimal.
    Keywords: NIMBY; LULU; Lindahl outcomes; Public projects; Mechanism design
    JEL: D61 H40 R53
    Date: 2020–09

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NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.