Welcome!

News Feed Item

To Manage a Transnational Infrastructure Programme in Africa Is Difficult -- But Not Impossible

Despite the Challenges, Such an Ambitious Programme Can Succeed if Known Best Practices Are Deftly Deployed, According to a New Report From the World Economic Forum in Collaboration With BCG

ABUJA, NIGERIA -- (Marketwired) -- 05/07/14 -- Policy makers have high ambitions for regional infrastructure. In Africa, leading organisations set up the Priority Action Plan of the Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA PAP) in 2012, encompassing 51 programmes with an investment need of $68 billion. Such programmes can make a vital contribution to social and economic welfare by boosting intraregional trade, connecting landlocked countries to world markets, or encouraging the sharing of water resources across borders. Implementing such programs is far from easy, however.

"The management of any complex infrastructure programme -- a railway system, for instance, or an electricity production and distribution network -- is difficult enough within an individual country," says Philipp Gerbert, a senior partner at The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and coauthor of the report. "With transnational programmes, the challenges can be tremendous, especially in Africa, owing to the continent's wide variations in languages, cultures, financial capacities, and maturity of public institutions."

PIDA PAP's original target date for completion, 2020, now appears unrealistic. The question is how PIDA PAP can ever be realised in its entirety. Potential answers are provided in a new World Economic Forum report on the African Strategic Infrastructure Initiative titled Managing Transnational Infrastructure Programmes in Africa--Challenges and Best Practices. The report, developed together with BCG, identifies the key hurdles to be overcome and presents a best-practice framework to guide policy makers, sponsors, and managers and to facilitate the delivery of transnational programmes on schedule, at cost, and at high quality.

Identifying the Challenges ...

The challenges relate to financing, to technical and regulatory alignments (agreeing on the gauge width of a cross-border railway network, for instance, or aligning national axis-load regulations), and to matters of governance and human relations. Things get really complex when you have to coordinate the responsibilities and processes across several countries and the risks posed by political changes are multiplied. So, too, are the delays caused by red tape. The difficulties might also have a historical dimension: a legacy of mistrust or even conflict can jeopardise cooperation between participating nations, and many countries lack a tradition of conducive environmental measures, such as enforcement of anticorruption laws and stringent regulations on public-private partnerships.

... and Overcoming Them

Having outlined these challenges, the report goes on to enumerate the best practices that have been brought to bear in response to them at the programme's various phases. They include: a joint strategic vision for regional infrastructure; a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis assessing the impact in all affected countries; the issuing of a single transnational concession rather than several intranational concessions; a precise allocation of the costs, risks, and benefits to the participating countries; a rigorous and transparent tendering process; harmonisation of regulations; and coordination of demand profiles and maintenance schedules. "This coordination is especially important where consumption and production are located in different countries," explains Tenbite Ermias, a partner at BCG and a coauthor of the report. "If a power plant in one country fails, the main victims might be in the neighbouring country, which can suffer from significant losses due to interruptions in production. Strong and enforceable coordination mechanisms are required to manage such situations."

Another key success factor is to institutionalise cross-border collaboration. The ideal is a strong programme-management unit, established through a special treaty between all the participating countries. Whether based on public or private resources or a mix of the two, it would oversee most of the phases of the programme, and coordinate all the stakeholders.

The relevance and applicability of the various best practices have to be determined on a programme by programme basis. Adopted and applied appropriately, they should remove roadblocks to the implementation of regional infrastructure programmes generally and help make PIDA a reality -- with all the benefits that will bring, such as improved public health, a boost in local prosperity, and greater regional integration.

A copy of the report can be downloaded at www.bcgperspectives.com.

To arrange an interview with one of the authors, please contact Eric Gregoire at +1 617 850 3783 or at [email protected].

About The Boston Consulting Group
The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is a global management consulting firm and the world's leading advisor on business strategy. We partner with clients from the private, public, and not-for-profit sectors in all regions to identify their highest-value opportunities, address their most critical challenges, and transform their enterprises. Our customized approach combines deep insight into the dynamics of companies and markets with close collaboration at all levels of the client organization. This ensures that our clients achieve sustainable competitive advantage, build more capable organizations, and secure lasting results. Founded in 1963, BCG is a private company with 81 offices in 45 countries. For more information, please visit bcg.com.

About bcgperspectives.com
Bcgperspectives.com features the latest thinking from BCG experts as well as from CEOs, academics, and other leaders. It covers issues at the top of senior management's agenda. It also provides unprecedented access to BCG's extensive archive of thought leadership stretching back 50 years to the days of Bruce Henderson, the firm's founder and one of the architects of modern management consulting. All of our content -- including videos, podcasts, commentaries, and reports -- can be accessed by PC, mobile, iPad, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

Latest Stories
In the rush to compete in the digital age, a successful digital transformation is essential, but many organizations are setting themselves up for failure. There’s a common misconception that the process is just about technology, but it’s not. It’s about your business. It shouldn’t be treated as an isolated IT project; it should be driven by business needs with the committed involvement of a range of stakeholders.
SYS-CON Events announced today that MangoApps will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. MangoApps provides modern company intranets and team collaboration software, allowing workers to stay connected and productive from anywhere in the world and from any device. For more information, please visit https://www.mangoapps.com/.
SYS-CON Events announced today that EastBanc Technologies will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. EastBanc Technologies has been working at the frontier of technology since 1999. Today, the firm provides full-lifecycle software development delivering flexible technology solutions that seamlessly integrate with existing systems – whether on premise or cloud. EastBanc Technologies partners with p...
SYS-CON Events announced today that AppNeta, the leader in performance insight for business-critical web applications, will exhibit and present at SYS-CON's @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo New York, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. AppNeta is the only application performance monitoring (APM) company to provide solutions for all applications – applications you develop internally, business-critical SaaS applications you use and the networks that deli...
In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Bruce Swann, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Adobe, will discuss how the Adobe Marketing Cloud can help marketers embrace opportunities for personalized, relevant and real-time customer engagement across offline (direct mail, point of sale, call center) and digital (email, website, SMS, mobile apps, social networks, connected objects). Bruce Swann has more than 15 years of experience working with digital marketing disciplines like web analytics, social med...
The cloud market growth today is largely in public clouds. While there is a lot of spend in IT departments in virtualization, these aren’t yet translating into a true “cloud” experience within the enterprise. What is stopping the growth of the “private cloud” market? In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Nara Rajagopalan, CEO of Accelerite, will explore the challenges in deploying, managing, and getting adoption for a private cloud within an enterprise. What are the key differences betwee...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ContentMX, the marketing technology and services company with a singular mission to increase engagement and drive more conversations for enterprise, channel and SMB technology marketers, has been named “Sponsor & Exhibitor Lounge Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York. “CloudExpo is a great opportunity to start a conversation with new prospects, but what happens after the...
WebRTC is bringing significant change to the communications landscape that will bridge the worlds of web and telephony, making the Internet the new standard for communications. Cloud9 took the road less traveled and used WebRTC to create a downloadable enterprise-grade communications platform that is changing the communication dynamic in the financial sector. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Leo Papadopoulos, CTO of Cloud9, will discuss the importance of WebRTC and how it enables companies to fo...
SYS-CON Events announced today Object Management Group® has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
As machines are increasingly connected to the internet, it’s becoming easier to discover the numerous ways Industrial IoT (IIoT) is helping to shape the business world. This is exactly why we have decided to take a closer look at this pervasive movement and to examine the desire to connect more things! Now if you need a refresher on IIoT and how it is changing the world, take a moment and listen to Greg Gorbach with ARC Advisory Group. Gorbach believes, "IIoT will significantly change the worl...
SYS-CON Events announced today the Docker Meets Kubernetes – Intro into the Kubernetes World, being held June 9, 2016, in conjunction with 18th Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Register for 'Docker Meets Kubernetes Workshop' Here! This workshop led by Sebastian Scheele, co-founder of Loodse, introduces participants to Kubernetes (container orchestration). Through a combination of instructor-led presentations, demonstrations, and hands-on labs, participants learn ...
The IoT is changing the way enterprises conduct business. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, discuss how businesses can gain an edge over competitors by empowering consumers to take control through IoT. We'll cite examples such as a Washington, D.C.-based sports club that leveraged IoT and the cloud to develop a comprehensive booking system. He'll also highlight how IoT can revitalize and restore outdated business models, making them profitable...
The IoTs will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, will demonstrate how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and share the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the development proc...
Customer experience has become a competitive differentiator for companies, and it’s imperative that brands seamlessly connect the customer journey across all platforms. With the continued explosion of IoT, join us for a look at how to build a winning digital foundation in the connected era – today and in the future. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Nguyen, Group Product Marketing Manager at Adobe, will discuss how to successfully leverage mobile, rapidly deploy content, capture real-time d...
In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Cole, Director of Solutions Engineering at Peak 10, will discuss how the newest technology advances are reducing the cost and complexity of traditional business continuity and disaster recovery solutions. Attendees will: Learn why having a full disaster recovery strategy is more important now than ever before Explore the key drivers of a successful disaster recovery solution Achieve measurable operational and business value from a disaster recovery ...