nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2022‒04‒18
six papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Tartu Ülikool

  1. Opening up military innovation: causal effects of 'bottom-up' reforms to US defense research By Van Reenen, John; Howell, Sabrina T.; Rathje, Jason; Wong, Jun
  2. The Making of Civic Virtues: A School-Based Experiment in Three Countries By Briole, Simon; Gurgand, Marc; Maurin, Eric; McNally, Sandra; Ruiz-Valenzuela, Jenifer; Santín, Daniel
  3. R&D grant and tax credit support for foreign-owned subsidiaries: Does it pay off? By Lenihan, Helena; Mulligan, Kevin; Doran, Justin; Rammer, Christian; Ipinnaiye, Olubunmi
  4. Measuring the Implementation and Cost of High Quality Early Care and Education By Gretchen Kirby
  5. Pavement ME JPCP Transverse Cracking Model Calibration and Design Catalog Framework (Version 2.5.5) By Saboori, Ashkan; Lea, Jeremy; Harvey, John; Lea, Jon; Mateos, Angel; Wu, Rongzong
  6. How unpredictable is research impact? Evidence from the UK’s Research Excellence Framework By Yaqub, Ohid; Malkov, Dmitry; Siepel, Josh

  1. By: Van Reenen, John; Howell, Sabrina T.; Rathje, Jason; Wong, Jun
    Abstract: Organizations investing in R&D must decide whether to solicit specific technologies or allow innovators to suggest ideas. Using administrative data, we study the “Open” reform to U.S. Air Force R&D procurement, which invited firms to suggest any new potentially useful technology. The new program was run simultaneously with the traditional top-down “Conventional” program. Our regression discontinuity design offers the first causal evaluation of a defense R&D program. We document benefits from winning an Open award for VC funding, military technology, and innovation, and no benefits from Conventional, which instead fosters incumbency. The bottom-up approach appears to help explain Open’s success.
    Keywords: innovation; defense; R&D; procurement
    JEL: O31 O32 O38 H56 H57
    Date: 2021–04–13
  2. By: Briole, Simon (Paris School of Economics); Gurgand, Marc (Paris School of Economics); Maurin, Eric (Paris School of Economics); McNally, Sandra (University of Surrey); Ruiz-Valenzuela, Jenifer (London School of Economics); Santín, Daniel (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)
    Abstract: With the rise of polarization and extremism, the question of how best to transmit civic virtues across generations is more acute than ever. In this paper, we test the hypothesis that schools can be the place for this transmission by empowering students and gathering them around concrete and democratically chosen objectives. We draw on an RCT implemented in a large sample of middle schools in three European countries. The evaluated program leads students to carry out collective citizenship projects in their immediate communities under the supervision of teachers trained in student-centered teaching methods. The program significantly increases student altruism, their political self-efficacy as well as the quality of their relationship with their classmates and their respect for the rules of school life (less sanctions and absenteeism). In all three countries, the benefits are greater for students with the highest level of altruism and interest in politics at baseline. Investments made at an early age appear to be complement to those made during adolescence for the production of civic virtues.
    Keywords: citizenship, education, teaching practices, project-based learning, RCT, youth
    JEL: I20 I24 J24
    Date: 2022–03
  3. By: Lenihan, Helena; Mulligan, Kevin; Doran, Justin; Rammer, Christian; Ipinnaiye, Olubunmi
    Abstract: Foreign-owned subsidiaries make significant contributions to national Research and Development (R&D) in many host countries. Policymakers often support subsidiaries through R&D grants and R&D tax credits. A key objective of this funding is to leverage R&D-driven firm performance benefits for the host economy. However, the subsidiary's parent firm may decide not to exploit the results from publicly-funded R&D projects in the host country. Therefore, supporting subsidiaries' R&D presents a risk that significant amounts of public funding may translate into little, or no payoffs for the host economy. Our study provides the first evaluation of 1) whether public R&D funding stimulates additional R&D investment in subsidiaries, 2) whether policy-induced R&D drives subsidiary performance, and 3) the differential effects of R&D grants and R&D tax credits. Drawing on a unique panel dataset for Ireland (2007-2016), we find that both R&D supports drive subsidiary R&D, resulting in substantial host country firm performance benefits.
    Keywords: Public funding for R&D,Firm performance,Firm ownership,Foreign-owned subsidiaries,Multinational enterprise,R&D tax credit,R&D grant,Policy evaluation
    JEL: D22 O25 F23 F21 O38 D04 H25 O31
    Date: 2022
  4. By: Gretchen Kirby
    Abstract: This project snapshot provides key background and reference information about the project.
    Keywords: Child care, Head Start;, ethods and Tools
  5. By: Saboori, Ashkan; Lea, Jeremy; Harvey, John; Lea, Jon; Mateos, Angel; Wu, Rongzong
    Abstract: The Mechanistic-Empirical Pavement Design Guide (MEPDG) is a comprehensive method, including models and guidance, developed in 2002 by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) to analyze and design both flexible and rigid pavements. The MEPDG is implemented in a software called Pavement ME. The MEPDG models were calibrated using data from the Long-Term Pavement Performance (LTPP) sections from throughout the United States, including some from California. The MEPDG recommends that nationally calibrated models be validated using local data and, if necessary, recalibrated. This recommendation is particularly applicable to the Caltrans road network, considering the climate and materials differences between California and the rest of the nation. The first step in recalibrating Pavement ME is to perform a sensitivity analysis to identify which variables are most important and to look for results that do not match expected performance. This was the subject of a previous report titled Pavement ME Sensitivity Analysis. Based on the sensitivity analysis, the decision was made to perform a new calibration of the MEPDG models as implemented in Pavement ME software. A new approach was developed for the calibration. This new approach uses network-level performance data from the pavement management system (PMS) with orders of magnitude more observations and length of pavement than are used in the traditional approach and in the national calibration of the MEPDG models. The framework does not require sampling of materials from specific sections in the network. Rather, it uses the statewide median values from mechanistic testing from a representative sample of materials across the network. Variability of performance and reliability of design (probability that the design will meet or exceed the design life) is accounted for through separate consideration of within-project and between-project variability. The calibration reduced significant bias in the application of the nationally calibrated models to California. This report presents the results of the application of the new procedure to calibrate the Pavement ME transverse cracking model for jointed plain concrete pavements (JPCP). The California pavement management system (PaveM) database—with about 4600 lane-miles of JPCP built on 446 lane replacement projects completed between 1947 and 2017—was used to calibrate the transverse cracking model in Pavement ME. The nationally calibrated Pavement ME transverse cracking model prediction on the PaveM performance database has bias and standard error of 13.3% and 23.03%, respectively. After calibration, the bias and standard error of the locally calibrated model decreased to 0.039% and 5.69%, respectively.
    Keywords: Engineering, Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Pavement ME, jointed plain concrete pavement, calibration, design catalog, transverse cracking, performance data
    Date: 2021–09–01
  6. By: Yaqub, Ohid; Malkov, Dmitry; Siepel, Josh
    Abstract: There is growing interest in the wider impact of research outside academia. In particular, there is concern about the extent to which the topic and principal beneficiaries of such impact can be foreseen before research is even funded. Does research impact tend to emerge largely as planned, or are eventual impacts unrecognisable from initial plans? To explore the unexpectedness of impact, we draw on one of the largest research impact assessment exercises in the world - the UK’s Research Excellence Framework. We exploit REF impact traced back to research funding applications, as a dataset of 2,194 case-grant pairs, to compare impact topics with funder remits. For 209 of those pairs, we directly compare their descriptions of ex-ante and ex-post impact. We found impact claims in these case-grant pairs are often congruent with each other, with 76% showing alignment. This indicates that, conditional on REF-inclusion, research delivers impact with largely the same orientation as envisaged at the outset of their projects. This is especially so when research is co-produced with focal stakeholders. These results offer a distinct complement to other preliminary studies on the REF, which have tended to emphasise the vast diversity and complexity of research impact. Our findings suggest that research impact is far from random, and that there is wide scope for policy intervention. In particular, we highlight the potentially important role that collaboration plays in setting the direction of research impact. However, the findings may also signal that the REF is preferentially excluding unpredicted impacts and indirect impacts. This selection effect, where a qualitatively different class of impacts are crowded out, may well be exacerbated as the share of REF rewards is weighted further towards the impact criterion.
    Date: 2022–03–09

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