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UNPACKING THE INFLUENCE OF PUBLIC–PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS ON DISASTER RESILIENCE: A COMPARISON OF EXPERT PERSPECTIVES

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Public managers are under increasing pressure to develop and operate physical infrastructure systems that prove resilient in the face of natural disasters. At the same time, fiscal pressures and mounting infrastructure needs are drawing more and more attention to public–private partnerships (PPP) as a mechanism for delivering infrastructure. The research question guiding this study is how can the institutional designs of PPPs influence the potential for improving infrastructure resilience? We examined the perceived relationship between infrastructure resilience and PPPs by conducting and analyzing research interviews with twenty‐four senior infrastructure experts in Washington, DC. The results reflect findings of related privatization research, indicating that market‐based incentives can advance public values such as resilience, but the responsibility for ensuring they do so rests primarily with government. We note key differences in how the infrastructure investment experts and disaster resilience experts view issues in infrastructure management, and provide suggestions for improving public‐private collaboration to improve resilience.
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Keywords: H11; H57; Incentives; L14; L24; Q54; infrastructures; natural disasters and their management; public private partnerships; public services

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2019

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