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Governance And Accountability: Implications of PPP on Issues of Transparency and Accountability

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Governance And Accountability

Major Essay Topics (choose ONE of the following topics) (3000 words)

1. Assess critically the implications of public-private partnerships (PPPs) for issues of transparency and accountability. In formulating your response draw upon evidence from one or more cases.

2. Examine and assess critically Mulgan’s (2003, p.150) argument that the non-profit sector ‘provides the clearest illustration of the need to limit accountability for the sake of other values’.     You are encouraged to look at, say, a particular organisation, field of activity or such to help give your study both a solid empirical foundation and analytic depth.

3. Governance and accountability in emerging democracies:

i. Imagine you are advising and training a newly formed government in an emerging democracy. Traditionally, government has been run via a network of patron-client relationships. Critically assess the challenges you would face in assisting this government to improve accountability and transparency.


ii. What series of steps would be required in assisting a government (both politicians and public servants) in an emerging democracy to transition from a largely opaque, hierarchical governance system to a more transparent and accountable system?

4. ‘New Public Management reforms [since the 1980s] have worked to both increase and decrease accountability and transparency.’ Discuss critically.

5. ‘While the accountability mechanisms of publicly listed companies resemble those of democratically elected governments, in practice, these mechanisms are often largely ineffective.’  To what extent do you agree with this statement?

6. Drawing on a specific case (or a couple of cases) assess critically the role of the media today in holding government to account, in the process identifying key pressures and/or processes at work to both enhance and diminish the media’s role as the fourth estate.

7. Patrick Weller has called ministerial advisers the ‘black hole’ of government because they are often unknown to the public and largely unaccountable to the parliament. Explore and assess critically the accountability of ministerial advisers within Australian government today.

8. Journalist Adele Ferguson said in November, 2015, ‘The truth is if we want whistleblowers to provide information, they need to be treated as heroes instead of pariahs.’ Compare and contrast the role and treatment of whistleblowers in both the public and private sectors of Australia.


Governance And Accountability: Implications of PPP on Issues of Transparency and Accountability



Word Count: 3025

1.0 Introduction

The United States, in conjunction with different regional and international organizations, have realized it is imperative that economic development is characterized by transparency and accountability (Appe & Barragan, 2013, p. 591). The popularity surrounding good governance has been brought about by the increasing demand in the calls for ethical behavior concerning the private and public actors in the fast-paced economic environment. However, it is essential to recognize that in infrastructural development practitioners of Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) have ignored the importance of proper governance. For that reason, all the stakeholders need to work towards ensuring that the role of transparency and accountability is highlighted in all Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) projects; as such this function should be well appreciated and incorporated in different operations. The lack of transparency and accountability often acts as a breeding ground for corruption; thus this negatively influences the project in question by bringing about the feeling of frustration towards Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) projects. Taking the example of most developing counties where there is inadequate governance most of the Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) projects fail to be successfully implemented.

2.0 Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs)

            In the sector of infrastructure, there is no commonly appreciated definition of Public-Private Partnership (PPP). Under transparency and accountability, Public-Private Partnership (PPP) has different characteristics, for example, contractual agreements with other entities that are complemented with the general public receiving many essential services courtesy of the private sector. According to Gladstone et al. (2013, p. 163), most of these projects possess risks that are equally shared between the public and the private sectors. These risks are well distributed on the basis that the party with the best-proven management skills is given the responsibility to manage the risks thus mitigating the costs ensuing from the risk. Presently, the private sector has proven to be very useful not only when raising capital to finance projects but also in the provision of management and expert skills. Regarding the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) projects the private sector offers various benefits, notably, customer satisfaction, speedier delivery, additional resources and so on.

            Besides, the private sector in the United States also covers different sectors, namely, transport and telecommunication services and most recently defense, health, and education. The private sector is famed as a solution provider complementing the services provided by local and national government; for that reason, these projects are of great significance to the economic development of the United States. The fact that most of the infrastructural development is capital intensive; this prompts the intervention of local authorities seeking financial assistance through mobilization of private capital (Chrismas, 2013, p. 203). However, it is significant to acknowledge that there are various challenges that both the private and public sector have to overcome to guarantee successful implementation of the Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) projects. For example, the establishment of practical legal and regulatory frameworks, provides the political commitment to the project and set up efficient public administration systems.

3.0 Case studies

3.1 Case One: George V. Voinovich Cleveland Innerbelt Bridge Eastbound Bridge

This is a Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) project in Cleveland, Ohio. The project brought various stakeholders on board so that to achieve the full implementation of the project. The project was estimated to cost around $293 million, and it was to be constructed for 2-3 years. The public sector was represented by the office of the Governor, while the private sector was represented by various organizations that facilitated the completion of the project regarding the provision of capital mobilization, expertise and so forth. The George V. Voinovich Cleveland Innerbelt Bridge Eastbound Bridge, project involved the change in structure design through demolition and replacement of the 60-year-old bridge. According to KCI (2018), the project was different from the previous traditional methods used to facilitated public and economic development. The project involved the efforts derived from the public sector that related to the total control over the operational aspects and elements used in the demolition and replacement of the bridge. On the other hand, the private sector was involved in the project through the provision of expert knowledge regarding the details of the project on maintenance, financing, renovation, construction,...


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