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The Evaluation of Complex Infrastructure Projects

A Guide to Qualitative Comparative Analysis

Lasse Gerrits and Stefan Verweij

Infrastructure projects are notoriously hard to manage so it is important that society learns from the successes and mistakes made over time. However, most evaluation methods run into a conundrum: either they cover a large number of projects but have little to say about their details, or they focus on detailed single-case studies with little in terms of applicability elsewhere. This book presents Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) as an alternative evaluation method that solves the conundrum to enhance learning.
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Figures and tables

Lasse Gerrits and Stefan Verweij

FIGURES

1.1  Map of the A15 Maasvlakte-Vaanplein project in the port of Rotterdam, the Netherlands
1.2  Aerial view of one of the sites of the A15 Maasvlakte- Vaanplein project in Rotterdam, the Netherlands
1.3  The new railway bridge at Moerdijk, the Netherlands, is part of the HSL-Zuid megaproject
2.1  General overview of the research process in QCA
2.2  Outcomes of cases can emerge under different configurations of conditions
2.3  Example of a codebook, generated from the ATLAS.ti software for data coding
2.4  Example of a code-tree derived from the research presented in Verweij and Gerrits (2015)
2.5  Simplified overview of conditions included in the Room for the River program theory evaluation
3.1  Example of the calibration of the condition ‘hot water’
3.2  Example of the calibration of the condition ‘hot water’ with QCA based on set-theory
3.3  First calibration alternative of construction companies’ bidding for a contract for a particular plot
3.4  Second calibration alternative of construction companies’ bidding for a contract for a particular plot
4.1  Transformation of a calibrated data matrix into a truth table
4.2  Graphical representation of the minimization of a hypothetical truth table
4.3  Graphical representation of the minimization of a hypothetical mvQCA truth table with two conditions
5.1  Example of visualization of QCA results with an XY-plot
5.2  Example of visualization of QCA results with a Venn diagram
5.3  Example of visualization of QCA results with a flow diagram

TABLES

2.1  General characteristics of the case-based approach and the variable-based approach
2.2  Empirical studies in infrastructure development and use, using QCA
3.1  Example of theory-driven crisp-set calibration
3.2  Example of qualitative case-driven fuzzy-set calibration
3.3  Example of theory-driven fuzzy-set calibration
3.4  The calibrated data matrix of 27 road construction projects
4.1  Basic notations and operations in QCA
4.2  Overview of the differences between necessity and sufficiency
4.3  The truth table of 27 road construction projects
4.4  The results of the QCA study of 27 road construction projects
4.5  Overview of the strategies for dealing with logical contradictions and limited diversity
5.1  Summary of different strategies to integrate time in QCA
5.2  Example of visualization of QCA results