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The Evaluation of Complex Infrastructure Projects

A Guide to Qualitative Comparative Analysis Lasse Gerrits, Department of Political Science, Otto-Friedrich University Bamberg, Germany and Stefan Verweij, Department of Spatial Planning and Environment, University of Groningen, the Netherlands
Infrastructure projects are notoriously hard to manage so it is important that society learns from the successes and mistakes made over time. However, most evaluation methods run into a conundrum: either they cover a large number of projects but have little to say about their details, or they focus on detailed single-case studies with little in terms of applicability elsewhere. This book presents Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) as an alternative evaluation method that solves the conundrum to enhance learning.
Extent: c 192 pp
Hardback Price: $110.00 Web: $99.00
Publication Date: June 2018
ISBN: 978 1 78347 841 5
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  • eISBN: 978 1 78347 842 2

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  • Economics and Finance
  • Public Sector Economics
  • Regional Economics
  • Environment
  • Transport
  • Politics and Public Policy
  • Public Administration and Management
  • Public Policy
  • Urban and Regional Studies
  • Regional Economics
  • Transport
  • Urban Economics
Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) is an emerging research method that is highly suitable for evaluation studies. Clear and concise, this book explains how researchers and evaluators can use QCA effectively for the systematic and thorough analysis of large infrastructure projects, while also acknowledging their complexity.

Lasse Gerrits and Stefan Verweij present the key steps of this methodology to identify patterns across real life cases. From collecting and interpreting data, to sharing their knowledge and presenting the results, the authors use examples of megaprojects to emphasise how QCA can be used successfully for both single infrastructure ventures, as well as more extensive projects. In addition to discussing the best practices and pitfalls of the methodology, further examples from current research are given in order to illustrate how QCA works effectively in both theory and practice.

Being written with researchers and evaluators in mind, this book will be of great benefit for students and scholars of evaluation studies, public administration, transport studies, policy analysis and project management. The book is also highly applicable for those working in public or private organizations involved in infrastructure projects looking for an effective, detailed and systematic method of evaluation.
‘Disentangling within-case complexity is a challenging task, even more so if one examines multiple cases. Gerrits and Verweij brilliantly demonstrate, using the latest conceptual and technical innovations, and through the concrete example of infrastructure projects, that QCA can produce qualitative leaps in taking on this challenge. This book is a must-read for researchers, evaluators and practitioners who take both complexity and comparison seriously.’
– Benoît Rihoux, Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium
Contents: 1. Not a Straightforward Path: Developing and Evaluating Infrastructure Projects 2. The Case 3. Calibration 4. Comparison 5. Complexity and Evaluation Revisited Index