Picking winners: a review of Infrastructure Australia

It is rare to see agreement on any transport issue: every discussion seems to quickly split along modal lines, or a three way tussle between economic, social and environmental impacts and outcomes. The exception, where universal consensus would appear to be the norm, is the view that we, as a society, are very poor ‘pickers” when it comes to transport investment. The concern that Australia is not getting value for money from its infrastructure investment led to the establishment of Infrastructure Australia (IA) in 2008. Similar initiatives have now been adopted by at least four Australian state governments. There are now more organisations and resources than ever being applied to the planning and development of major transport initiatives. This paper examines the impact IA has had on shaping urban transport investment and priorities over its eight-year history. It examines IA’s Infrastructure’s Priority List (IPL) and finds that IA has largely failed to establish a pipeline of soundly based transport investment options. Significantly, we can observe that major urban transport projects appear to proceed independently of any IA endorsement. The paper suggests there are a number of political and technical factors that make picking a successful transport investment a fraught, if not, intractable problem.


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: 16p
  • Monograph Title: 38th Australasian Transport Research Forum (ATRF 2016), Melbourne, 16th - 18th November 2016

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01627390
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: ARRB
  • Files: ITRD, ATRI
  • Created Date: Feb 27 2017 10:04AM