Decision-making on Large Infrastructure Projects: The Role of the Dutch Parliament

The preparation and implementation of large infrastructure projects present many practical problems. Recent literature has devoted much attention to budget overruns and overestimation of returns, partly in relation to the presence of misinformation. In the Netherlands, the Parliamentary Commission on Infrastructure Projects (TCI) conducted an inquiry into the manner in which two large projects, the Betuwe Railway Line and the HSL Zuid High-Speed Railway link, had been prepared. In its final report, many shortcomings in the decision-making procedures were identified, particularly when seen from the perspective of the Lower House of the Dutch Parliament. The Commission has put forward an assessment framework for large infrastructure projects, intended to allow the Lower House greater influence over the decision-making processes and more control over their implementation. In this contribution, we examine the Commission's findings and identify a number of lessons with a normative character: How can the preparation and implementation of large infrastructure projects be improved? Finally, the relevance of the TCI proposals for countries other than the Netherlands is briefly addressed.


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  • Accession Number: 01050193
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 21 2007 4:19PM