Public-Private Partnerships Guide

This website was designed by a team of researchers at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government to inform state and local public infrastructure project decision makers when the use of a Public-Private Partnership (P3) infrastructure procurement and delivery model makes sense for their constituents.

Decision Tools

 
TECHNICAL
Does my project have a high degree of complexity?

Technical considerations include the degree of technical complexity of your project, whether your project will use new technology, and whether you have in-house the level of experience/manpower/competency in your existing staff and management team to manage the public infrastructure construction and subsequent operation and maintenance of the completed infrastructure.  Technical considerations can add an element of risk manageability that you might want to shift to a P3 contracting team.

TECHNICAL
Does my project have a high degree of complexity?

Technical considerations include the degree of technical complexity of your project, whether your project will use new technology, and whether you have in-house the level of experience/manpower/competency in your existing staff and management team to manage the public infrastructure construction and subsequent operation and maintenance of the completed infrastructure.  Technical considerations can add an element of risk manageability that you might want to shift to a P3 contracting team.

TECHNICAL
Does your project have a high degree of complexity?

Technical considerations include the degree of technical complexity of your project, the use of new technology, and the level of experience or competency within your existing team to manage the construction and subsequent operation and maintenance of the completed infrastructure. Technical considerations can add an element of risk management that you might want to shift to a P3 contracting team. Before starting, if you would like to learn more about the major risks involved in infrastructure projects, click here.

FINANCIAL
Which P3 model is right for you?

Financial considerations include access to capital markets, limitations on borrowing capacity, bond ratings, bond market capacity, demand risks, and differential costs of capital. Answers to this category should be given the most weight in your decision-making. Before starting, if you would like to better understand the cost of capital differences between the public and private sectors, click here.

LEGISLATIVE
Can you legally pursue a P3?

Legislative considerations include the frameworks and procurement provisions within your constitutional, statutory, and local government charters. If your team has no experience drafting and negotiating a P3 contract, you may consider hiring a consultant or lawyer who has experience with P3 contracts to help the public sector get a good deal.

POLITICAL
Will a P3 work for my constituents?

Political considerations include whether the project spans multiple jurisdictions; how the project impacts active stakeholders; the degree of constituent pressure against taxes, rates, and user fees; the likelihood of constituent dissatisfaction from project delay or failure; and the government's ability to absorb cost overruns. To better understand the issues between political willpower and marketing infrastructure funding, click here.