The Evaluation of Complex Infrastructure Projects


The Evaluation of Complex Infrastructure Projects

A Guide to Qualitative Comparative Analysis

9781783478415 Edward Elgar Publishing
Lasse Gerrits, Professor and Academic Director, Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies, Erasmus University Rotterdam and Stefan Verweij, Assistant Professor of Infrastructure Planning, Governance and Methodology, Department of Spatial Planning and Environment, University of Groningen, the Netherlands
Publication Date: 2018 ISBN: 978 1 78347 841 5 Extent: 192 pp
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.

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Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) is a new 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 cases. From collecting and interpreting data to sharing their knowledge and presenting the results, the authors use examples of many projects to emphasize 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.

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.
Critical Acclaim
‘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 References Index
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