Public agencies contract out to pursue a variety of goals. But, these goals cannot be realized if the performance of contractors is not assessed and monitored. This study examines the state of performance measurement and contract monitoring in the U.S. transit agencies. We focus on three research questions: (1) What monitoring capacity exists within transit agencies? (2) What monitoring methods are used by transit agencies? (3) What performance measures are tracked by transit agencies? We find monitoring units are common in a third of agencies in the study. Service and customer complaints are the most common performance measures, while penalties and liquidated damages are the most frequent form of penalties. Finally, we find that transit agencies utilize a variety of output and outcome measures to monitor contractors.
The fear of receiving a bid protest is said to affect acquisition strategies, yet it has not been empirically explored. Based on the Public Value Framework and interviews with contracting personnel, this research tests a model of antecedents to and consequences of the fear of a protest. Survey data was obtained from a sample of 350 contracting personnel. The fear of protest is mitigated by having sufficient procurement lead time and by source selection experience, and increased by protest risk. Fear of protest increases compromised technical evaluations, added procurement lead time, and transaction costs, while it decreases contracting officer authority and is associated with source selection method inappropriateness. Compromised technical evaluations, in turn, decrease contractor performance while contracting officer authority increases contractor performance. Thus, findings suggest that, indeed, the tail is wagging the dog. The research concludes with several managerial implications, study limitations and future research directions.
This article argues that confusion exists as to exactly what constitutes a public-private partnership (P3). This confusion, it is maintained, creates problems for public procurement professionals when advising elected officials and government administrators on the appropriate uses of P3s. The article looks first at the imprecise language used by organizations (governments and others) to define, describe and discuss P3s. A proposed consensus definition of P3s is the nintroduced together with an accompanyingp roposed taxonomy of P3 types. The article then demonstrates how the proposed consensus definition and taxonomy can bring more clarity to discussions about P3s and their uses. The article concludes by suggesting that some public procurement standard setting organization should undertake the task of developing and promulgating more prescriptive guidanceon P3s.