Appraisal of public spending in the development process

T. A. Jackson

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)


    As demonstrated in this review, appraisers of public sector investment projects do not simply search for efficient ways to deliver the goals set by policy-makers. They routinely make their own value judgements about project goals and the development process, both implicitly through the methodology applied and explicitly in their interpretation of the findings. Case studies in the use of cost-benefit and multi-criteria analysis and in the new tools of environmental assessment demonstrate that appraisal is least effective when it pretends to be value-free and resists attempts to explore its underlying assumptions. A robust assessment process should instead be transparent and defensible, allowing the values on which it is based to be identified and subject to scrutiny. This is particularly important when tackling the challenge of climate change. Given the scale of public spending commitments needed for delivering a low-carbon economy, appraisers must play a crucial role in ensuring that the non-monetised environmental elements of new investments are adequately assessed.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)205-214
    Number of pages10
    JournalProceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers: Urban Design and Planning
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2011


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