Understanding the procurement performance of local governments: A duration analysis of public works

Articolo su Environment and Planning C: Politics and Space

Giuseppe F. Gori, Patrizia Lattarulo, Marco Mariani

cover mariani 1Public works often suffer from long durations and time escalations, which entail the dissatisfaction of collective needs. Using micro-level data on the works recently procured by the municipalities of a large Italian region, we analyse delay incurrence and the subsequent time-to-completion of works. For this purpose, we rely on a split-population duration model. Our findings show that appropriate levels of expertise and experience – which are often believed to be lacking in municipalities – have a role in speeding up works’ executions. The lack of experience is actually an issue that requires appropriate policy remedies, in that it brings to higher delay probability and longer delay durations. The same applies to municipalities that resort to late payments in response to budget constraints.