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Comparing a best management practice scorecard with an auction metric to select proposals in a water quality tender


  • Rolfe, John
  • Windle, Jill


This report compares evaluation frameworks for selecting landholder proposals to improve water quality. A water quality tender performed in the Burdekin region in Northern Australia in 2007/2008 was used as a case study. Tender bids can be assessed using an inputs-based best management practice scorecard or an outputs-based auction metric. Where landholder proposals are rated by inputs-based criteria, the scorecard approach, and other variants of multi-criteria analysis are commonly applied. Output-based approaches are typically applied in water quality and conservation tenders. This approach uses an environmental benefits index to summarise the cost-effectiveness of each proposal. The case study evaluation reported in this paper shows how multi-criteria analysis-type assessments are flawed. It demonstrates how public funding efficiency can be more than doubled by using auction metrics to assess landholder water quality improvement proposals.

Suggested Citation

  • Rolfe, John & Windle, Jill, 2009. "Comparing a best management practice scorecard with an auction metric to select proposals in a water quality tender," Research Reports 94939, Australian National University, Environmental Economics Research Hub.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:eerhrr:94939

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Uwe Latacz-Lohmann & Carel P. C. M. Hamsvoort, 1998. "Auctions as a Means of Creating a Market for Public Goods from Agriculture," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(3), pages 334-345.
    2. W√ľnscher, Tobias & Engel, Stefanie & Wunder, Sven, 2008. "Spatial targeting of payments for environmental services: A tool for boosting conservation benefits," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(4), pages 822-833, May.
    3. Uwe Latacz-Lohmann & Carel Van der Hamsvoort, 1997. "Auctioning Conservation Contracts: A Theoretical Analysis and an Application," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 79(2), pages 407-418.
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