fbpx Infrastructure in a Market Economy: Curriculum | Harvard Kennedy School

Infrastructure in a Market Economy will help you develop the skills and judgment you need to formulate and implement well-structured infrastructure plans that will stand the test of time. Over the course of 12 days, you'll analyze and discuss more than 30 cases drawn from a variety of infrastructure initiatives in both industrialized and industrializing countries.

This comprehensive and comparative approach will help you gain a deep understanding of the dynamics that determine the success or failure of infrastructure projects and the complex relationship between private infrastructure providers and government.

    Led by a teaching team that includes some of the world's top thought leaders in this area, Infrastructure in a Market Economy will explore:

    • Choosing the appropriate public-private partnership model
      • These sessions assess the economic and political strengths and weaknesses of various forms of private and public involvement—including ownership, management and selective or partial contracting—and the circumstances under which each is most effective. You will also explore the limits of privatization and consider the alternative of reforming public infrastructure provision using incentive structures to increase effectiveness.
    • Building and maintaining political support
      • Reforms in infrastructure provision affect many stakeholders and are often controversial. You will analyze the political environment for reform, including the importance and difficulties of gaining support from parties including the poor, organized labor and others who may not be directly involved in negotiations. Other topics include understanding how support is maintained or lost, and the important role that regulatory and other institutions play in this regard.
    • Navigating private finance and capital markets
      • The desire to attract private capital is often a key practical consideration shaping public-private partnerships. You will explore different sources and types of private and multilateral financing, how borrowers and lenders attempt to reduce or manage risk and how the structure of the financial deal affects the subsequent behavior of both the government and the private provider.
    • Regulating to protect consumer interest
      • Private involvement in infrastructure is complicated because infrastructure is often thought to have the characteristics of natural monopoly. You will examine the variety of strategies and institutions used to control private monopolies, and ways to assess the potential for competition in infrastructure markets. Three basic regulatory strategies — private contracts, concession contracts, and discretionary regulation — will be examined, along with various hybrids and variants.

    Recently added case studies include:

    • The Rio Airport
    • The New Delhi water and electricity systems
    • Toll road projects in Mexico and Pennsylvania
    • The Bujagali dam in Uganda
    • Partnerships Victoria in Australia
    • The Tamil Nadu Urban Development Fund
    Download a program brochure to learn more.
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