Cost-Benefit Analysis

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Cost-benefit analysis (CBA) is the systematic and analytical process of comparing benefits and costs in evaluating the desirability of a project or programme, often of a social nature and for society as a whole. CBA is fundamental to government decision-making and can be an effective tool for informed decisions on the use of society’s scarce resources. This book highlights the main concepts and principles of cost-benefit analysis used in real life cases and actual applications. The book contains rich cases, materials and examples of real life CBA applications with emphasis both on physical and non-physical projects and infrastructure developments in Asia and beyond. The book also discusses techniques frequently used in applied CBA. The first part of the book introduces the key concepts and principles of CBA before Part Two covers some pertinent issues relating to CBA, such as the recent trend of using behavioural economics and frequently used techniques in applied CBA. Finally, in Part Three, case studies are written up to illustrate how CBA is done, and questions for the readers and students to ponder are raised at the end of each chapter. The scope of the case studies is more than just physical infrastructures but will include public sector policies and programmes covering a host of social policies as in health, education, social welfare programmes, and the environment. For each case, there will be illustrations of the key concepts and principles of CBA used. Undertakings analyzed include: the Three Gorges Dam in China the 2008 Beijing Olympics the Costs of Global Warming the Jamuna Bridge in Bangladesh The case studies, many of which have taken or are to take place in developing countries provide a rich background to the principles of the method, and are accompanied by a wealth of explanatory material. As well as being suitable for courses in Cost-Benefit Analysis, Public Finance, Environmental and Health Economics, the book should be of interest to all public policy decision makers and planners.

Table of contents

Half Title
Title Page
List of figures
List of tables
Part I: Background and theory of cost–benefit analysis
1. Introduction
2. History and scope of cost–benefit analysis
Part II: Topics and issues frequently discussed in cost–benefit analysis
3. Valuation issues and methods
4. Benefit transfers
5. Simple mathematics of discounting and decision criteria
6. Value of a statistical life in Singapore
7. Estimating the economic cost of air pollution on health
8. Economic cost of diseases
Part III: New applications in cost–benefit analysis
9. Pair-wise comparison: a novel approach
10. Behavioural effects and cost–benefit analysis: lessons from behavioural economics
Part IV: Case studies of cost–benefit analysis
11. The Three Gorges Dam project, China
12. Flue gas desulphurization in Mae Moh, Thailand
13. Hosting international events: cases from the Beijing Olympics 2008 and the inaugural Youth Olympics in Singapore 2010
14. Human capital investment programmes in Singapore
15. Qinghai-Tibet railway: investment to improve travel time, promote tourism and economic growth
16. Proliferation of nuclear power plants in Asia: examples from Malaysia and Singapore
17. Preservation of the Amazon rainforest
18. Wastewater management project in Sri Lanka
19. Nairobi-Thika highway in Kenya
20. Southeast Asian haze of 1997
21. H5N1 avian influenza immunization programme
22. Fangcheng Port project, Guangxi, China
23. Jamuna Bridge project in Bangladesh
24. Construction of Suvarnabhumi Airport, Bangkok, Thailand
25. Speed limit regulation for highways in Japan
Further Reading

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