The implementation of public private partnerships
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Public Private Partnerships (PPP) has been a globally popular strategy for governments over the past two decades for delivering infrastructure assets and services. Despite the fact that numbers are gradually increasing, the figures of PPP projects in the overall public procurement, especially in Greece, are still not encouraging. The synergies and value for money that can be created by engaging in a long-term commitment can be appealing; however, as in every intricate and perplexed institution, research and planning becomes a necessity. The present research focuses on two important issues, considered as value drivers affecting value for money achieved in PPP projects; value assessment of the critical success factors in PPPs and evaluation of the existing legislative framework. The paper begins by acknowledging the broad nature and appeal of the PPP phenomenon. After considering current research gaps appearing regarding the institution in the spatial framework of Greece, a problem statement follows containing the main aims of the thesis, as well as the main research questions the researcher will attempt to answer through empirical ex-ante and a-priori findings. An outline of the dissertation with the basic points of its structure, as well as a brief reference on the methodology that the researcher will employ is also presented, while the chapter concludes with a brief delineation of the potential demarcations the researcher will encounter during the implementation of the study, but also with the delimitations the concept of PPPs encompasses in Greece. The second chapter of the thesis provides an extensive literature review and a discussion on the theoretical foundation of PPPs as a financial instrument, aiming to define and illustrate the PPP concept and different types of its potential arrangements, the tool’s benefits and drawbacks compared to conventional procurement approaches and the main reasons and circumstances in which a PPP project can be opted for and successfully implemented. Within the international financial and Greek legal framework, an evaluation of PPPs’ potentials and constraints, as well as a discussion of the significant shortcomings and criticisms these partnerships encompass, will aim to account for the fact that in alternate macroeconomic curves only custom or carefully targeted public projects are able to deliver benefits, such as greater efficiency, value for money, timely delivery, better quality of service provision etc. Having completed the literature review, a chapter follows defining the concepts of research methodology and research design and approach. The researcher also focuses in justifying the importance of using for the purpose of the thesis both quantitative and qualitative methods, as well as primary and secondary data selection methods, while the validity and reliability of the research instruments and the collected data are discussed. Furthermore, the description of how data is analysed and presented is discussed, accompanied by ethical issues arising at the stage of presenting research findings. Following the interviews that were granted from carefully selected executives from the public and private PPP sector, a detailed analysis takes place in the fourth chapter of the thesis, so as to assess the data collected and process all expert assumptions and propositions in such a way that answers are given to major questions concerning the alternative method of PPP arrangements against typical public funding, when these can be safely employed in order to ensure optimum budgeting in terms of risk allocation and how the fees levied through PPPs or other legal, financial or social constraints reduce the potential, efficiency and economic feasibility of a project. The last chapter of the paper is concluded with an overall discussion on the PPP institution and the analysis previously performed, aiming to exploit the research findings, so as to assess how PPPs can be efficiently used in different macroeconomic curves in order promote the concept of good project management. The master thesis concludes with a discussion of the findings procured through the interview phase, comparisons to existing literature and recommendations for future academic research, also taking into consideration the limitations of the researcher.