Effectiveness of infrastructure asset management: challenges for public agencies

Daan Schraven (Department of Construction Management and Engineering, University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands)
Andreas Hartmann (Department of Construction Management and Engineering, University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands)
Geert Dewulf (Department of Construction Management and Engineering, University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands)

Built Environment Project and Asset Management

ISSN: 2044-124X

Publication date: 8 July 2011

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this research is to better understand the decisions in infrastructure asset management at public agencies and the challenges of these agencies to improve the effectiveness of their decision making.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a literature review on asset management at public agencies, a case study was used to investigate the decision making of a provincial agency in The Netherlands. A total of 12 semi‐structured interviews with employees of the agency were conducted, amended by an analysis of policy documents, maintenance contracts, inspection reports, and planning documents.

Findings

The research revealed that key challenges to achieving effective infrastructure asset management are: the establishment of alignment between infrastructure objectives, situation and intervention; the formulation of infrastructure objectives; and the management of multiple actors with different interests.

Practical implications

Public agencies should pay more attention to clearly defined infrastructure objectives which are consistent with the agencies' strategic policy goals and interests of multiple stakeholders. That also includes that public agents need to develop new skills and knowledge to cope with the various challenges of effective infrastructure asset management.

Originality/value

The research clustered decisions in infrastructure management into three decision areas and showed that effectiveness of the decision making is constituted through the interrelationship of these areas and depends on clearly defined objectives.

Keywords

Citation

Schraven, D., Hartmann, A. and Dewulf, G. (2011), "Effectiveness of infrastructure asset management: challenges for public agencies", Built Environment Project and Asset Management, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 61-74. https://doi.org/10.1108/20441241111143786

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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