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Title: Accountability in establishing public private partnerships : a case study of the West Kowloon Cultural District
Other Titles: Jian li gong si ying he zuo zhong de wen ze xing : Xi Jiulong wen yu yi shu qu de ge an yan jiu
建立公私營合作中的問責性 : 西九龍文娛藝術區的個案研究
Authors: Wu, Hoi Yan (胡凱欣)
Department: Dept. of Public and Social Administration
Degree: Master of Philosophy
Issue Date: 2006
Publisher: City University of Hong Kong
Subjects: Ministerial responsibility -- China -- Hong Kong
Public-private sector cooperation -- China -- Hong Kong
Notes: 284 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm.
CityU Call Number: JQ1539.5.A63 W8 2006
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 264-284)
Thesis (M.Phil.)--City University of Hong Kong, 2006
Type: Thesis
Abstract: Faced with budgetary pressures and increased demands for better services, there has been an international trend in the use of Public Private Partnerships (PPPs). This use of PPPs has led to increased blurring in what were traditionally regarded as public and private sector responsibilities and to greater inter-sectoral linkages. In recent years, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government (HKSARG) has become fully committed to adopting PPPs wherever feasible (Efficiency Unit, 2003). For example, in developing the West Kowloon Reclamation into a Cultural District, the HKSARG has adopted a PPP strategy by which the private sector partner will Build, Operate and eventually Transfer (BOT) the facilities back to the government at the end of 30-year period. However, since the announcement of the project, there has been a heated debate in the community with many residents and politicians expressing concerns about how accountability will be achieved in the PPP project. This research aims to investigate the development of PPPs in the Hong Kong government's provision of public goods and services. It seeks to build a systematic evaluation model for studying accountability for Build, Operate and Transfer-type PPP projects, drawing upon ideas generated from an extensive literature review. It subsequently tests the utility of this model in the context of the West Kowloon Cultural District (WKCD) PPP. Criteria in examining accountability in the early establishment stages of WKCD include communal, contractual, managerial and public accountability. Since its inception, the WKCD project has undergone many changes and these including, for instance, the government's introduction of a new set of development parameters and contract conditions in October 2005. In explaining such changes, it would appear that issues relating to changing demands and needs for accountability have been of particular importance. Subsequently, in February 2006, the HKSARG announced that the project would be delayed while a new approach has developed. This was because no bidders had remained willing to proceed under the new, October 2005, terms that reflected a new recognition for the government to be more accountable publicly. Through the evaluation which utilizes an amended version of Sabatier's Advocacy Coalition Framework and which relies on both documentary and interview data, it is evident that all four types of accountabilities are not well-secured in the establishment of the WKCD. This is even though the government has made concessions and introduced several changes in the policy direction so as to better meet public aspirations and demands for greater accountability. The dissertation concludes that although the political climate and the mentality of 'Hong Kong people ruling Hong Kong' are regarded as factors that facilitated the enhancement of accountability. The degree to which accountability was secured was undermined by the policy inconsistencies of the HKSARG, its non-conformance with best practices elsewhere, as well as by the low-trust environment that exists between the HKSARG and its people.
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