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Public satisfaction evaluation of urban water environment treatment public-private partnership project: A case study from China

Huimin Li (Department of Construction Engineering and Management, North China University of Water Resources and Electric Power, Zhengzhou, China) (School of Architecture and Built Environment, Centre for Asian and Middle Eastern Architecture, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia)
Wenmin Li (Department of Construction Engineering and Management, North China University of Water Resources and Electric Power, Zhengzhou, China)
Lunyan Wang (Department of Construction Engineering and Management, North China University of Water Resources and Electric Power, Zhengzhou, China) (Henan Key Laboratory of Water Environment Simulation and Treatment, Zhengzhou, China)
Lelin Lv (Department of Construction Engineering and Management, North China University of Water Resources and Electric Power, Zhengzhou, China)

International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation

ISSN: 2398-4708

Article publication date: 31 March 2020

Issue publication date: 11 March 2021

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Abstract

Purpose

The Public–Private Partnership (PPP) mode has been widely used in the urban water environment treatment project (UWETP). The public is the direct perceiver of urban water environment treatment PPP project (UWETP-PPP), and their satisfaction with it can reflect the project's success to some extent. The purpose of this paper is to provide operational management strategies for special-purpose vehicle (SPV) company through public satisfaction evaluation of UWETP-PPP.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire was designed through the literature review and experts' opinions that consisted of 33 indexes to investigate public satisfaction with UWETP-PPP. Then, the exploratory factor analysis (EFA) was used to confirm the evaluation index system of public satisfaction. Next, the weights of the indexes were calculated by the normalized mean method and fuzzy synthetic evaluation (FSE) was applied to evaluate public satisfaction with UWETP-PPP. Finally, the importance-performance analysis (IPA) was used to suggest improvement strategies of public satisfaction with UWETP-PPP.

Findings

The factors affecting public satisfaction with UWETP-PPP are preliminarily determined, and an evaluation model that provides a specific basis for evaluating public satisfaction with UWETP-PPP in the future is constructed. Furthermore, some strategies and suggestions to improve the performance level of UWETP-PPP are put forward.

Research limitations/implications

First, the factors influencing public satisfaction with UWETP-PPP are numerous and complex. The factors discussed in this study may be further refined to make the research more reliable and effective. Second, the sample from this study can be expanded to multiple projects, so as to make the study more general. Finally, given that the influencing factors in the paper were elicited by using scores obtained through a questionnaire survey, it would bring bias to the result to some extent. The evaluation method can be further improved, such as combining with interval intuitionistic fuzzy evaluation.

Practical implications

In the context of the characteristics of PPP projects in water environment treatment and the huge demand of the country to apply PPP model in the territory of water environment treatment, this study evaluated the public satisfaction with UWETP-PPP in Xuchang City, China. The result provided a beneficial reference for the private organizations to take appropriate actions to improve the public satisfaction level of UWETP-PPP, so as to improve the performance level of SPV. It also provided a system of public satisfaction evaluation with UWETP-PPP, which can be considered as the standard of public satisfaction survey, thus improving the comprehensiveness of the UWETP-PPP performance evaluation system and the government regulatory capacity, thus affecting the sustainable development of UWETP-PPP.

Social implications

In addition, the research results provide a useful reference for the public organizations to issue a UWETP-PPP regulation rule, review a UWETP-PPP design plan, and conduct new similar project decision-making. In summary, the study results not only serve as a good reference for the evaluation of public satisfaction of eco-environmental PPP projects, but also have essential application value for improving the service level, performance improvement and operational management of the SPV.

Originality/value

The research results of this paper have certain wide-spread value, and the research framework and research method can be applied to other infrastructure section, such as transportation, stadium et al.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This study was supported by the MOE (Ministry of Education in China) Project of Humanities and Social Sciences (No.19YJC630078), National Key R&D Program of China (No.2018YFC0406905), National Natural Science Foundation of China (No.71974056 and 71302191), the Foundation for Distinguished Young Talents in Higher Education of Henan (Humanities & Social Sciences), China (No.2017-cxrc-023), Youth Talents Teachers Scheme of Henan Province Universities (No.2018GGJS080), China Scholarship Council (No.201908410388).

Citation

Li, H., Li, W., Wang, L. and Lv, L. (2021), "Public satisfaction evaluation of urban water environment treatment public-private partnership project: A case study from China", International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation, Vol. 39 No. 2, pp. 407-432. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJBPA-10-2019-0089

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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