Policy and Planning for Large Infrastructure Projects: Problems, Causes, Cures
This paper argues, first, that a major problem in the planning of large infrastructure projects is the high level of misinformation about costs and benefits that decision makers face in deciding whether to build, and the high risks such misinformation generates. Second, it explores the causes of misinformation and risk, mainly in the guise of optimism bias and strategic misrepresentation. Finally, the paper presents a number of measures aimed at improving planning and decision making for large infrastructure projects, including changed incentive structures and better planning methods. Thus the paper is organized as a simple triptych consisting in problems, causes, and cures.
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