Critical success factors for public-private partnership in water supply projects

Ernest Effah Ameyaw, Albert P.C. Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Public–private partnerships (PPPs) are viewed as a reform tool for resolving inefficiency and absence of dynamism in water supply delivery in developing countries. However, the requirements for their successful implementation have received very little attention. This paper aims to describe a set of critical success factors (CSFs) that, when given special and continual attention, would ensure a successful project implementation and to provide a predictive tool to aid implementers to evaluate the likelihood of a successful PPP water supply project. Design/methodology/approach: Fourteen perceived CSFs were initially derived from project cases and extant literature, and verified through a two-round Delphi survey. Factor analysis established five critical success factor groups (CSFGs) that were then used to develop a fuzzy synthetic evaluation tool for assessing the chance of a successful project. Findings: The five key CSFGs are commitment of partners, strength of consortium, asset quality and social support, political environment, and national PPP unit. The model output showed that, overall, these factors have a “very high” positive impact on a successful implementation of a water supply project. Hence, there is an excellent correlation between achievement of the CSFGs and project success. Success indices of individual principal factors are also “very high”. Originality/value: The study presents a tool to public clients and private audience, and it is hoped that the study will trigger policy development towards PPP practice in developing countries, because these findings have wider implications for legal and regulatory systems, public capacity, financing, public procurement and politics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)124-160
Number of pages37
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Critical success factors
  • Developing countries
  • Private sector
  • Public sector
  • Public-private partnership
  • Water supply

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Architecture
  • Building and Construction


Dive into the research topics of 'Critical success factors for public-private partnership in water supply projects'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this