Decision-Making on Mega-Projects

Decision-Making on Mega-Projects

Cost–benefit Analysis, Planning and Innovation

Transport Economics, Management and Policy series

Edited by Hugo Priemus, Bent Flyvbjerg and Bert van Wee

This book enlarges the understanding of decision-making on mega-projects and suggest recommendations for a more effective, efficient and democratic approach. Authors from different scientific disciplines address various aspects of the decision-making process, such as management characteristics and cost–benefit analysis, planning and innovation and competition and institutions. The subject matter is highly diverse, but certain questions remain at the forefront. For example, how do we deal with protracted preparation processes, how do we tackle risks and uncertainties, and how can we best divide the risks and responsibilities among the private and public players throughout the different phases of the project?

Chapter 15: Drawing Institutional Lessons Across Countries on Making Transport Infrastructure Policy

W. Martin de Jong

Subjects: business and management, operations management, development studies, development economics, economics and finance, development economics, public sector economics, regional economics, transport, environment, transport, urban and regional studies, transport


W. Martin de Jong 15.1 INTRODUCTION The growth of the global movement of people, goods and data has, in its wake, increased transnational policy dependence and the exchange of knowledge and information among policy-makers and specialists. Both bilateral learning by representatives of one country from another and multilateral learning within transnational expert networks in Europe and elsewhere have made the phenomenon of ‘policy transfer’ or ‘institutional transplantation’ across countries and regions more salient (Dolowitz, 1999; Rose, 1993; 2005; Stone, 2000; 2004; Van Bueren et al., 2002; De Jong et al., 2002; De Jong and Edelenbos, 2007). Policy-makers rate the performance of their own countries in terms of investment levels, congestion levels, modal split and many other indicators against that of their neighbours, and attempt to copy elements from the institutional framework of countries they consider their benchmarks. In the world of transport infrastructure investment the proponents of comprehensive policy analysis may admire the German ‘Standardisierte Bewertung’ (‘standardised appraisal’), which has been in existence there for decades and want to emulate its procedures at home (De Jong and Geerlings, 2005). Those with a strong preference for direct democracy may choose to study the Swiss or Californian practices of consulting individual voters on specific transport issues through the ballot box. Those reluctant to accept high levels of public spending in public transport are more favourably inclined towards a purely economic approach to investment and look at the practice of involving the private sector which occurs in the UK (Nash and Preston,...

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