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A Novel Approach to Economic Evaluation of Infrastructure? Examining the Benefit Analyses in the Swedish High-Speed Rail Project

Ronnle, Erik LU (2017) In Case Studies on Transport Policy 5(3). p.492-498
Abstract (Swedish)
The purpose of this paper is to describe a novel approach to economic evaluation of infrastructure, the benefit analyses in the Swedish high-speed rail project, and to analyse what role these can play in the decision-making process. The reports identify benefits from infrastructure investment at the local level and were intended to assist in making co-financing agreements and as a basis for decisions on route-planning and prioritisation of public transport investments. The study finds that the benefit analyses are insufficient as decision bases as they double-count benefits, disregard costs, are methodologically inconsistent and lack comparability. Rather, they seem to fulfil the role of negotiation bids in a process that focuses on... (More)
The purpose of this paper is to describe a novel approach to economic evaluation of infrastructure, the benefit analyses in the Swedish high-speed rail project, and to analyse what role these can play in the decision-making process. The reports identify benefits from infrastructure investment at the local level and were intended to assist in making co-financing agreements and as a basis for decisions on route-planning and prioritisation of public transport investments. The study finds that the benefit analyses are insufficient as decision bases as they double-count benefits, disregard costs, are methodologically inconsistent and lack comparability. Rather, they seem to fulfil the role of negotiation bids in a process that focuses on measuring the level of commitment and the willingness to contribute financially to the project. It seems that the new method increases the space for political manoeuvring which together with the one-sided focus on benefits risks worsening the optimism bias observed in mega-project planning. (Less)
Abstract
The purpose of this paper is to describe a novel approach to economic evaluation of infrastructure, the benefit analyses in the Swedish high-speed rail project, and to analyse what role these can play in the decision-making process. The reports identify benefits from infrastructure investment at the local level and were intended to assist in making co-financing agreements and as a basis for decisions on route-planning and prioritisation of public transport investments. The study finds that the benefit analyses are insufficient as decision bases as they double-count benefits, disregard costs, are methodologically inconsistent and lack comparability. Rather, they seem to fulfil the role of negotiation bids in a process that focuses on... (More)
The purpose of this paper is to describe a novel approach to economic evaluation of infrastructure, the benefit analyses in the Swedish high-speed rail project, and to analyse what role these can play in the decision-making process. The reports identify benefits from infrastructure investment at the local level and were intended to assist in making co-financing agreements and as a basis for decisions on route-planning and prioritisation of public transport investments. The study finds that the benefit analyses are insufficient as decision bases as they double-count benefits, disregard costs, are methodologically inconsistent and lack comparability. Rather, they seem to fulfil the role of negotiation bids in a process that focuses on measuring the level of commitment and the willingness to contribute financially to the project. It seems that the new method increases the space for political manoeuvring which together with the one-sided focus on benefits risks worsening the optimism bias observed in mega-project planning. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Planning, Benefit analysis, mega-projects, planning, benefit appraisal, mega-projects
in
Case Studies on Transport Policy
volume
5
issue
3
pages
7 pages
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • scopus:85019351205
ISSN
2213-624X
DOI
10.1016/j.cstp.2017.05.005
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
59449600-ea23-41f5-b66e-0982e188a8c9
date added to LUP
2017-10-19 09:51:51
date last changed
2018-01-07 12:22:58
@article{59449600-ea23-41f5-b66e-0982e188a8c9,
  abstract     = {The purpose of this paper is to describe a novel approach to economic evaluation of infrastructure, the benefit analyses in the Swedish high-speed rail project, and to analyse what role these can play in the decision-making process. The reports identify benefits from infrastructure investment at the local level and were intended to assist in making co-financing agreements and as a basis for decisions on route-planning and prioritisation of public transport investments. The study finds that the benefit analyses are insufficient as decision bases as they double-count benefits, disregard costs, are methodologically inconsistent and lack comparability. Rather, they seem to fulfil the role of negotiation bids in a process that focuses on measuring the level of commitment and the willingness to contribute financially to the project. It seems that the new method increases the space for political manoeuvring which together with the one-sided focus on benefits risks worsening the optimism bias observed in mega-project planning.},
  author       = {Ronnle, Erik},
  issn         = {2213-624X},
  keyword      = {Planning,Benefit analysis,mega-projects,planning,benefit appraisal,mega-projects},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {492--498},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Case Studies on Transport Policy},
  title        = {A Novel Approach to Economic Evaluation of Infrastructure? Examining the Benefit Analyses in the Swedish High-Speed Rail Project},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cstp.2017.05.005},
  volume       = {5},
  year         = {2017},
}