Megaprojects and Risk: An Anatomy of Ambition

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Cambridge University Press, Feb 13, 2003 - Business & Economics - 207 pages
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Megaprojects and Risk provides the first detailed examination of the phenomenon of megaprojects. It is a fascinating account of how the promoters of multi-billion dollar megaprojects systematically and self-servingly misinform parliaments, the public and the media in order to get projects approved and built. It shows, in unusual depth, how the formula for approval is an unhealthy cocktail of underestimated costs, overestimated revenues, undervalued environmental impacts and overvalued economic development effects. This results in projects that are extremely risky, but where the risk is concealed from MPs, taxpayers and investors. The authors not only explore the problems but also suggest practical solutions drawing on theory, experience and hard, scientific evidence from the several hundred projects in twenty nations and five continents that illustrate the book. Accessibly written, it will be the standard reference for students, scholars, planners, economists, auditors, politicians and interested citizens for many years to come.
  

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User Review  - mortensengarth - LibraryThing

Read book and interviewed author while searching for factors influencing success of Beijing Olympics. Points out that many megaprojects overshoot original expected costs due to lack of accountability ... Read full review

Contents

The megaprojects paradox
1
A calamitous history of cost overrun
11
The demand for megaprojects
22
Substance and spin in megaproject economics
32
Environmental impacts and risks
49
Regional and economic growth effects
65
Dealing with risk
73
Conventional megaproject development
86
Four instruments of accountability
107
Accountable megaproject decision making
125
Beyond the megaprojects paradox
136
Risk and accountability at work a case study
143
Notes
152
Bibliography
180
Index
201
Copyright

Lessons of privatisation
92

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About the author (2003)

Werner Rothengatter is Head of the Institute of Economic Policy Research and of the Unit on Transport and Communication at the University of Karlsruhe, Germany. He is also the president of the World Congress on Transport Research Society (WCTRS).