Is CBA ranking of transport investments robust?
AbstractCost-benefit analysis (CBA) is often used when many transport investments need to be ranked against each other, for example in national investment planning. However, results are often questioned on claims that the ranking depends crucially on uncertain assumptions about the future, and on methodologically or ethically contestable trade-offs of different types of benefits relative to each other. This paper explores the robustness of CBA rankings of transport investments with respect to two types of uncertainties: relative benefit valuations and scenario assumptions related to car ownership, characteristics and costs. The study is based on CBAs of 479 suggested road and rail investments in Sweden that have been shortlisted for possible inclusion in the national transport investment plan. The CBA ranking turns out to be robust to variations in the studied scenario assumptions. The CBA ranking also turns out to be robust to changes in the relative valuations of different types of benefits – person travel time savings, traffic safety, emissions and freight benefits. We also compare two sets of travel time valuations against each other, one of which differentiated with respect to mode and travel purpose and one which is not, again concluding that the investment ranking is robust.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by CTS - Centre for Transport Studies Stockholm (KTH and VTI) in its series Working papers in Transport Economics with number 2012:30.
Length: 14 pages
Date of creation: 21 Dec 2012
Date of revision:
Publication status: Forthcoming as Börjesson, Maria, Jonas Eliasson and Mattias Lundberg, 'Is CBA ranking of transport investments robust?' in Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, 2013.
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Centrum för Transportstudier (CTS), Teknikringen 10, 100 44 Stockholm, Sweden
Web page: http://www.kth.se/abe/om_skolan/organisation/centra/cts
Cost benefit analysis; Appraisal; Robustness; Decision support.;
Other versions of this item:
- R41 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Transportation: Demand, Supply, and Congestion
- R48 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Government Pricing and Policy
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-01-07 (All new papers)
- NEP-TRE-2013-01-07 (Transport Economics)
- NEP-URE-2013-01-07 (Urban & Real Estate Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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