Calls have been made for a new system of private arbitration to avoid costly delays to national infrastructure projects.
Nuno Gil, Professor of New Infrastructure Development at Alliance MBS, says under the present system major transport schemes are often prone to lengthy planning delays as a result of disputes between local authorities and Whitehall going through lengthy parliamentary battles.
He says although there is a clear role for Parliament in pushing through compulsory purchase orders and compensating residents who are affected by infrastructure projects, disputes between central and local government need to be handled differently.
Said Prof Gil: “There are often disagreements between councils and central government about what the overall vision of a project should be. While defending the right of councils to object to proposals and assemble their case, the issue here is that they invariably end up petitioning Parliament to resolve planning disputes, a move which is both costly and causes delays. There is a lot of gaming going on which can be very disruptive and protracted, yet this is an outcome that the disputants do not actually want.”
Instead Prof Gil, whose own research has been looking at the organisational design of major infrastructure schemes, says evidence has suggested that independent arbitration similar to what is observed in strategic alliances leads to much better outcomes in such disputes.
“We can improve the system by involving arbitrators that are third party to the dispute, but not to the project organisation, without undermining the democratic process.”
He says such issues are brought into focus by the proposed HS2 high speed rail link between London and the North.
The first phase of the £56bn link between London and the Midlands is due to open in 2026 while a second Y-shaped phase, taking the line to the North West in one direction and Yorkshire in the other, is due to be completed about 2033.
Although powers to build the second phase of the line were included in last month’s Queen’s Speech, the project has seen heated debate over the exact route of the line in the North and where exactly its main stations should be located. There has also been a well-publicised legal dispute between Camden Council in London and Whitehall over the redevelopment of Euston Station as part of the project.
Added Prof Gil: “HS2 is a perfect case in point of these issues. If we are to accept government evidence, accepted by Parliament, that demonstrates HS2 will open up major opportunities for value co-creation and appropriation by a large array of private and public organizations in Northern cities such as Manchester and Liverpool, we cannot afford to see major planning delays to this project.”
Prof Gil’s call comes in the context of a study by the Institute of Government into new forms of structuring around the infrastructure planning process.
Meanwhile last month Andrew Adonis, chair of Britain’s National Infrastructure Commission, also said there should be no “delay or prevarication” on major infrastructure projects in the context of Brexit and a minority government.
Monday, September 11, 2017
Interview with Daniel Velasquez, MSc Innovation Management & Entrepreneurship alumnus
Monday, September 4, 2017
Over the summer term, our Full-time MBA students build their own curriculum from a choice that includes electives, an internship or a business simulation project.
Friday, August 11, 2017
The NHS Leadership Academy has appointed Alliance Manchester Business School as one of seven higher education institutions (HEIs) to deliver the NHS Masters in Business Administration (MBA) programme.
Friday, August 4, 2017
Paul Wood, Executive Principal at YK Pao School Secondary Division in Shanghai, recently started his fourth University of Manchester degree at Alliance MBS.
Wednesday, August 2, 2017
Why is it that employees who witness bullying in the workplace are often reluctant to intervene? And what role could they actually play in helping to improve the wider culture of a business? These are among the key questions that a team of academics from Alliance MBS are investigating as part of a project into the role that third parties play in workplace bullying.
Wednesday, August 2, 2017
Austerity is not just a consequence of the global financial crisis but is here to stay as states grapple with the wider impacts of globalisation and the difficulty of increasing state spending. These are among the key messages from an ongoing multi-national academic study into the ‘foundational economy’ – namely those parts of the economy which provide the very basic goods and services that are at the foundation of civilised life.
Friday, July 28, 2017
Randa Bessiso, Founding Director of our Middle East Centre, has been named amongst the Forbes Middle East 100 Most Powerful Arab Businesswomen for 2017. Randa was previously recognised by Forbes in the 2014, 2015 and 2016 lists.
Alliance Manchester Business School and Bruntwood celebrate significant step in campus redevelopment
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
MANCHESTER, 19 JULY, 2017 – Luminaries and leadership figures from Alliance Manchester Business School, Bruntwood and partners gathered on site at the hugely improved campus last night to celebrate a significant step forward in its redevelopment.
Alliance Manchester Business School and The University of Birmingham award 1000th MSc in Healthcare Leadership on behalf of NHS Leadership Academy
Friday, July 14, 2017
1,000th Masters in Healthcare Leadership is awarded on its flagship Elizabeth Garrett Anderson (EGA) programme.