nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2021‒02‒01
ten papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Tartu Ülikool

  1. Mandatory Disclosure of Managerial Contracts in Nonprofit Organizations By Michael Kopel; Marco A. Marini
  2. Unlocking Renewable Energy Potential in Indonesia: Assessment on Project Viability By Alin Halimatussadiah; Atiqah Amanda Siregar; Rafika Farah Maulia
  3. Decreasing costs of renewables: Insights on energy sector planning and climate policy from three country case studies By Eckstein, Johannes; Kurdziel, Marie-Jeanne; Castro, Leonardo Nascimento; Ordonez, Jose Antonio
  4. Riskwork in the construction of Heathrow Terminal 2 By Rebecca Vine
  5. Maldives; Technical Assistance Report-Public Investment Management Assessment By International Monetary Fund
  6. Games for triggering collective change in natural resource management: A conceptual framework and insights from four cases from India By Falk, Thomas; Zhang, Wei; Meinzen-Dick, Ruth Suseela; Bartels, Lara
  7. Economic Analysis and Infrastructure Investment By Edward L. Glaeser; James M. Poterba
  8. Environmental Reviews Fail to Accurately Analyze Induced Vehicle Travel from Highway Expansion Projects By Volker, Jamey; Lee, Amy; Handy, Susan
  9. Measuring the Effects of a Demonstration to Reduce Childhood Food Insecurity: A Randomized Controlled Trial of the Nevada Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Project By Philip Gleason; Rebecca Kleinman; Gregory Chojnacki; Ronette R. Briefel; Sarah Forrestal
  10. A Randomized Controlled Trial Measuring Effects of Extra Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Benefits on Child Food Security in Low-Income Families in Rural Kentucky By Gregory Chojnacki; Andrew Gothro; Philip Gleason; Sarah Forrestal

  1. By: Michael Kopel (Institute of Organization and Economics of Institutions, University of Graz); Marco A. Marini (University of Rome La Sapienza, CREI)
    Abstract: Nonprofit organizations have been recently mandated to disclose the details of their executives’ compensation packages. Contract information is now accessible not only to current and prospective donors, but also to rival nonprofit organizations competing for donations in the fundraising market. Our aim is to investigate the impact of publicly available contract information on fundraising competition of nonprofit organizations. We argue that, although such provision makes contract information available to multiple stakeholders and increases the transparency of the nonprofit sector, it also induces nonprofits to use managerial incentive contracts strategically. In particular, we find that the observability of incentive contracts relaxes existing fun draising competition. This is beneficial in terms of nonprofits’ outputs, in particular when these organizations are trapped in a situation of excessive fundraising activities. However, we show that publicly available contract information distorts nonprofits’ choice of projects, thus potentially inducing socially inefficient project clustering.
    Keywords: Nonprofit Organizations, Mandatory Contract Disclosure, Fundraising Competition, Strategic Incentive Contracts, Project Clustering, Project Specialization
    JEL: L31 D64 F35 L13
    Date: 2020–12
  2. By: Alin Halimatussadiah (Institute for Economic and Social Research, Faculty of Economics and Business, Universitas Indonesia (LPEM FEB UI)); Atiqah Amanda Siregar (Institute for Economic and Social Research, Faculty of Economics and Business, Universitas Indonesia (LPEM FEB UI)); Rafika Farah Maulia (Institute for Economic and Social Research, Faculty of Economics and Business, Universitas Indonesia (LPEM FEB UI))
    Abstract: Indonesian Government has set an ambitious target to achieve 23 percent of renewable energy share in primary energy mix as well as in term of power sector by 2025. This target is then realized by committing a plan to build 56.4 GW additional power generation until 2028 as stated in the Electricity Supply Business Plan (RUPTL) 2019–2028. However, the deployment of RE power plant seems to be threatened due to untoward pricing policy which is considerably lower than the generation cost of RE-based electricity, resulting in the increase of possibility of future RE projects become unfeasible. Using 242 RE projects documented in 2019–2018 RUPTL, this study aims to examine feasibility of future projects under BPP price and identify other factors which could possibly increase project’s viability. The scope of this study includes several technologies such as wind, solar, hydro, mini hydro, biomass, and biogas. Financial model was employed to estimate Net Present Value (NPV) of the project as feasibility indicator. Data for project’s cost structure and financial assumption is obtained by literature review, survey and focus group discussion (FGD) to RE developers. The result shows that only less than 50 percent of the samples are feasible, accounting for only 43 per cent by number of projects (103 out of 242 projects) and 42 per cent by capacity (2,452 out of 5,888 MW). Hydro power becomes RE technologies with the highest feasibility followed by biomass. Projects located in Bangka Belitung, Gorontalo, East Kalimantan, Maluku, and North Sulawesi are all feasible, while of which in main islands particularly Java Island are mostly unfeasible due to the lower tariff. In addition to the low feasibility rate, there are several cost components which are considered as Indonesia specific costs such as local content, land acquisition cost, transmission infrastructure cost, and regional adjustment for project location which result in higher project’s cost. Finally, it is important for the government to formulate a set of incentive policy for alleviating unfeasible RE projects.
    Keywords: renewable energy — project feasibility — power plant — Indonesia
    JEL: Q42 Q48 O22
    Date: 2020
  3. By: Eckstein, Johannes; Kurdziel, Marie-Jeanne; Castro, Leonardo Nascimento; Ordonez, Jose Antonio
    Abstract: This study builds on three case studies in Argentina, Indonesia and Mexico which analyse the implications of falling costs for renewable energy systems on the countries' energy sector planning and climate policy. Each case study consists of two country specific reports. The first report analyses how falling costs of renewable energy could impact country specific power sector development. The second report analyses the process of climate and renewable energy target setting, as well as the prevalent narrative around renewable energy integration. Finally, the present report provides a cross-country synthesis of all case studies, providing insights into the question of how falling costs of renewable energy systems might support the achievement of the goals of the Paris Agreement. Globally falling cost figures for solar PV and wind energy do not naturally translate into increased ambition in planning. The integration of these technologies to the energy system still face substantial barriers in our case study countries: The integration of higher shares of renewable energy goes along with investments into transmission and distribution network modernisation, network expansion and interconnections between power grids. Though an important element, falling costs for renewable energy projects alone do not necessarily translate into overall reduced power system costs. While globally falling costs for wind and solar PV are indicative for learning curve effects in the manufacturing of these technologies, the LCOE of renewable projects is highly sensitive to financing costs. These are largely determined by the local political and regulatory framework and remain high in our case countries, representing a barrier. We find that a number of regulatory and administrative barriers hinder higher integration of solar PV and wind. Frequently changing regulations and ill-designed support schemes often prevail over welldesigned renewable energy auction schemes that are followed over several years. We find the political economy fossil fuels to be pivotal in the energy sector and climate planning and target setting processes. Fossil fuel endowments and a long history of natural resource exploitation lead to strong vested interests towards sustaining the use of fossil fuels to satisfy a growing electricity demand. [...]
    Date: 2020
  4. By: Rebecca Vine (University of Sussex Business School)
    Abstract: The failure to manage risk in large-scale infrastructure projects has attracted intense debate. Recommendations suggest rigorous planning and once the contract is in place, the narrative of accountgiving emphasises constructing audit trails to assure delivery commitments. However, this can lead to blame avoidance and boundary preservation. This paper develops an in-depth case study of the construction of Heathrow Terminal 2 (T2). T2 was a £2.5bn project on the Eastern Campus of Heathrow Airport that successfully opened on time and to budget, despite an initial risk management ethos that emphasised boundary preservation. This is explored through the lens of riskwork, a form of everyday maintenance work that sustained risk management practice. A process methodology revealed a diachronic pattern of riskwork phases from initial concerns about ‘one version of the truth’ to strategising with a ‘dashboard’ to a final ‘golden thread’ engaging suppliers in risk talk. Progress was sustained by paying attention to which ‘residual’ categories of risk were excluded. As the programme progressed, riskwork became less about managing compliance and more about learning from emergence. This paper demonstrates an important relationship between innovation, learning from emergence and an adaptive riskwork infrastructure. It also describes an important role for mediatory instruments such as dashboards, reports and forums in making risks visible and actionable. It has significant implications for policy recommendations that oversimplify the management of risk into a form of accountability management that mitigates risks by demanding compliance. On a theoretical level it reveals the importance of temporality and path dependency in the study of riskwork infrastructures.
    Keywords: riskwork, accountability, infrastructure, projects, residual, emergence, innovation, Heathrow
    Date: 2020–12
  5. By: International Monetary Fund
    Abstract: This Technical Assistance Report discusses that in the Maldives, public investment trends have been influenced by a number of contextual factors including the economic dependency on tourism, the high exposure to climate change, and the recent democratization. The mission assessed the strength and quality of public investment management (PIM) in the Maldives using the IMF Public Investment Management framework, based on the three phases of the PIM cycle. The report highlights that the most significant weakness in the PIM and the wider Public Financial Management system is poor budget credibility and budget execution. However, some progress has been made in improving PIM institutions, and reforms are ongoing in a number of areas. It is imperative to strengthen the project appraisal process by developing a standard methodology for project appraisal, publishing this methodology and verifying that it is consistently applied by the line ministries. It is also important to develop a framework for ex-post evaluations and ensure that lessons learned from past projects are incorporated in revised guidelines and practices.
    Keywords: Public investment and public-private partnerships (PPP);Budget planning and preparation;Public investment spending;Capital budget;Capital spending;ISCR,CR,cash management,investment project,public investment,address government policy priority,budget process,capital stock
    Date: 2019–04–17
  6. By: Falk, Thomas; Zhang, Wei; Meinzen-Dick, Ruth Suseela; Bartels, Lara
    Abstract: As resource users interact and impose externalities onto each other, institutions are needed to coordinate resource use, create trust, and provide incentives for sustainable management. Coordinated collective action can play a key role in enabling communities to manage natural resources more sustainably. But when such collective action is not present, what can be done to foster it? There is growing awareness that the governance of natural resources has to be adapted to the specific context. Interventions are often implemented at small scale, and the potential to scale up facilitation intensive approaches is limited. Moreover, sustainable resource management frequently fails to emerge or breaks down after the project ends. To date, researchers have typically used behavioral games to study cooperation patterns of communities. Recently, games have been adapted as learning and stakeholder engagement tools to improve management of the commons, strengthen self-regulation of resource use, and enhance constructive interactions among resource users. Combining games with other interventions and tools and facilitated discussions has been proposed as a promising approach to improve collective action institutions through experiential learning — a classic approach in education. This paper reviews existing literature and synthesizes lessons learned from a series of studies testing the use of behavioral games for institutional capacity development in India. We conclude that, while games alone will not be the solution to all natural resource management challenges games can provide a structured and therefore replicable approach for influencing behavior. They can also improve system understanding, raise awareness, influence norms, facilitate dialogue, train for crisis response, and increase legitimacy of decisions.
    Keywords: INDIA; SOUTH ASIA; ASIA; water; forests; behavioural changes; natural resources management; decision making; activities; impact assessment; facilitation tools; sustainable natural resource management; games
    Date: 2021
  7. By: Edward L. Glaeser; James M. Poterba
    Abstract: This paper summarizes economic research on investment in public infrastructure and introduces the findings of several new studies on this topic. It begins with a review of several potential justifications for the public sector’s involvement in building, financing, and operating infrastructure, including limitations of private capital markets, externalities, and the control of natural monopolies. It then describes the conditions that characterize an optimal infrastructure investment program, emphasizing the need to extend project-based microeconomic cost-benefit analysis to incorporate the value of economy-wide macroeconomic and other externalities. It notes the importance of efficient use of infrastructure capital, and discusses three areas -- procurement, project management, and expenditure on externality mitigation – where further research could identify paths to efficiency improvement. It concludes by identifying several trends that have emerged since outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic that may have long-term effects on the role of both physical and digital infrastructure in the U.S. economy.
    JEL: H44 H76 R42 R53
    Date: 2020–12
  8. By: Volker, Jamey; Lee, Amy; Handy, Susan
    Abstract: Induced travel is a well-documented effect in which expanding highway capacity increases the average travel speed on the highway, which in turn reduces the perceived “cost” of driving and thereby induces more driving. This increase in vehicle miles traveled (VMT) increases congestion (often back to pre-expansion levels) and air pollutant emissions, reducing or eliminating the purported benefits of the expansion. Yet highway expansion projects continue to be proposed across California, often using congestion relief—and sometimes greenhouse gas reductions—as a justification for adding lanes. These rosy projections about the benefits of highway expansion projects indicate that the induced travel effect is often not fully accounted for in travel demand models or in the projects’ environmental review process. With this problem in mind, researchers at the University of California, Davis developed an online tool to help agencies estimate the VMT induced annually by adding lanes to major roadways in California’s urbanized counties. The researchers also applied the calculator to estimate the vehicle travel induced by five highway expansion projects in California that had gone through environmental review within the past 12 years. They then compared their estimates with the induced travel analysis completed for the projects’ actual environmental impact assessments. This policy brief summarizes findings from that research, along with policy implications. View the NCST Project Webpage
    Keywords: Law, Highway capacity, Traffic congestion, Travel demand, Vehicle miles of travel
    Date: 2021–01–01
  9. By: Philip Gleason; Rebecca Kleinman; Gregory Chojnacki; Ronette R. Briefel; Sarah Forrestal
    Abstract: To reduce childhood hunger, the US Department of Agriculture funded a set of demonstration projects, including the Nevada Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids (HHFK) project.
    Keywords: Food security, Hunger, Young children, Randomized trial, SNAP, Food expenditures
  10. By: Gregory Chojnacki; Andrew Gothro; Philip Gleason; Sarah Forrestal
    Abstract: To reduce childhood hunger, the US Department of Agriculture funded several innovative demonstration projects, including the Kentucky Ticket to Healthy Food project.
    Keywords: Food security, Hunger, Randomized trial, SNAP, Food expenditures

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