An analysis of the use of the public private partnership model in financing public sector research and development infrastructure in South Africa

Mashele, Makhosini Thaniel (2008-12)

Thesis (MDF (Business Management))--Stellenbosch University, 2008.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Economic development depends on a number of variables, including the ability of the economy to innovate technologically. Innovation depends to a large extent on the value, both qualitative and quantitative, of the research and development (R&D) happening in an economy. R&D in turn require various activities and inputs, including human resources, capital and infrastructure. The focus of this study is on the alternatives available to the public sector for funding public R&D. Most of the current public R&D infrastructure comes from the fiscus, which is strained under the pressure of many competing and immediate needs. An alternate model for funding public R&D infrastructure is that of public private partnerships (PPPs), which are private sector-supported initiatives for delivery of public goods and services. These are used all over the world to deliver public services with a high degree of success in sectors such as health (hospitals and services) and transport (roads, airports). This study looks at how this model can be applied in the delivery of public R&D infrastructure, which has not been popular in South Africa to date. A questionnaire was designed to look at five key areas for investigation with regard to R&D infrastructure, namely: the type of infrastructure as a determinant for the success of the PPP; the perception regarding the risk of the transaction; the incentives available to the private participants; the availability of capital in the market; and the effect of regulations on the transaction. These are investigated through the use of a questionnaire to get responses from people who have an understanding of PPP transactions in the country. The results show that R&D PPPs are possible and should be explored. One of the main reasons why they are currently not popular is because they are under-explored. The respondents felt that: the PPP regulations may have to be changed or adapted to be effective in the administration of PPP transactions; the risks for R&D PPPs seem to be high; sufficient capital exists to fund these transactions; the type of the infrastructure being financed is not necessarily a hindrance; and there are sufficient incentives for the private sector to participate in these transactions.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Ekonomiese ontwikkeling hang af van 'n aantal veranderlikes, onder andere die ekonomie se vermoë om tegnologies te innoveer. Sodanige innovasie word in 'n groot mate bepaal deur die waarde, beide kwalitatief en kwantitatief, van die navorsing en ontwikkeling wat binne die ekonomie plaasvind. Navorsing en ontwikkeling vereis weer verskeie aktiwiteite en insette, waaronder menslike hulpbronne, kapitaal en infrastruktuur. Hierdie studie fokus op alternatiewe wat vir die openbare sektor beskikbaar is ten opsigte van die befondsing van openbare navorsing en ontwikkeling. Die huidige openbare navorsing- en ontwikkelinginfrastruktuur kom hoofsaaklik van die fiskus, wat weens verskeie mededingende en dringende behoeftes onder druk is. 'n Publieke-private venootskap (PPV) bied 'n moontlike alternatiewe model vir befondsing van 'n openbare navorsing- en ontwikkelinginfrastruktuur. Openbare goedere en dienste word hiervolgens gelewer deur middel van inisiatiewe wat deur die privaatsektor ondersteun word. Die model word wêreldwyd baie suksesvol aangewend in sektore soos gesondheid (hospitale en dienste) en vervoer (paaie, lughawens). Hierdie studie ondersoek hoe die model toegepas kan word in die skep van 'n openbare navorsing- en ontwikkelinginfrastruktuur in Suid-Afrika, hoewel dit tot dusver nie hier gewild was nie. 'n Vraelys is ontwerp om vyf sleutelareas ten opsigte van navorsing- en ontwikkelinginfrastruktuur te ondersoek, naamlik: tipe infrastruktuur as 'n determinant vir die sukses van die PPV; persepsie aangaande risiko met betrekking tot die transaksie; aansporing wat aan private deelnemers gebied word; beskikbaarheid van kapitaal in die mark en die uitwerking van regulasies op die transaksie. Hierdie vraelys is aangewend om reaksie te verkry van persone wat begrip van publieke-private ondernemings in die land het. Die resultate wys dat PPV's binne 'n navorsing- en ontwikkelinginfrastruktuur moontlik is en verder ondersoek behoort te word. Een van die hoofredes waarom dit tans nie gewild is nie, is die gebrek aan toepaslike navorsing. Respondente het aangedui dat: PPV regulasies moontlik verander of aangepas sal moet word om effektief te wees in die administrasie van sodanige transaksies; die risiko's vir PPV's in navorsing en ontwikkeling hoog voorkom; voldoende kapitaal vir befondsing van transaksies beskikbaar is; die tipe infrastruktuur wat befondsing ontvang nie noodwendig 'n hindernis is nie en dat voldoende aansporing vir die privaatsektor gebied word om aan hierdie transaksies deel te neem.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/998
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