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The role of public private partnerships in fostering innovation

Nunzia Carbonara and Roberta Pellegrino

Construction Management and Economics, 2020, vol. 38, issue 2, 140-156

Abstract: Despite the prevailing view in the studies on public private partnerships (PPPs) on the potentiality of PPP models for stimulating innovation, existing studies fail to provide a full understating of the relationship between PPP characteristics and innovation, namely they do not explain whether and to what extent some characteristics of PPP are more likely to foster innovation rather than others. This paper aims at providing answers to the following key research questions: Which are the PPP features that favour innovation? How should a PPP be properly structured in order to foster innovation? With this aim, drawing upon the main streams of studies on innovation, we develop a conceptual framework on the relationship between PPP and innovation and formulate the research hypotheses. An econometric analysis is then applied to empirically test the hypotheses using a dataset of 290 PPP projects spanning different countries and sectors, extracted by the World Bank PPI Database. Findings reveal that the arrangement of PPP projects; the market, contract and network structure, as well as government supports, may affect innovation. These results provide foundations to elaborate managerial implications for the future implementation of PPP projects, showing how PPP features have to be structured in order to foster innovation.

Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1080/01446193.2019.1610184

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