IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Cost – benefit analysis and large-scale infrastructure projects: state of the art and challenges

Listed author(s):
  • Roger Vickerman

In this paper I review the problems surrounding the use of cost – benefit analysis (CBA) in the appraisal of large-scale infrastructure projects. I define the requirements of a best-practice transport CBA and show the difficulties in achieving these for large-scale projects. The main difficulties discussed are those of forecasting over long time periods, dealing with imperfect competition in transport-using sectors to obtain estimations of wider transport benefits, introducing private finance and appraising network effects. I conclude that CBA can remain a valuable tool as part of the appraisal process but that the inputs to a CBA have to be carefully assessed, and complementary approaches, such as computable general equilibrium modelling, have a useful role to play for very large or network projects.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
File Function: abstract
Download Restriction: Fulltext access restricted to subscribers, see for details

File URL:
File Function: main text
Download Restriction: Fulltext access restricted to subscribers, see for details

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Pion Ltd, London in its journal Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design.

Volume (Year): 34 (2007)
Issue (Month): 4 (July)
Pages: 598-610

in new window

Handle: RePEc:pio:envirb:v:34:y:2007:i:4:p:598-610
Contact details of provider: Web page:

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pio:envirb:v:34:y:2007:i:4:p:598-610. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Neil Hammond)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.