In the age of ‘neo-liberalism, governments in developed countries have moved progressively away from the ‘welfare state model’ towards more economic rationalist approaches . This shift embodies a corporatized view of the world – one in which governments no longer deliver services and infrastructure directly.
Instead, they rely upon their delivery via partnerships with corporate entities through public tender processes. Thus, the role of governments is no longer to provide infrastructure and services so much as to facilitate their delivery through corporate entities.
This phenomenon has resulted in a dependency by government upon developers to cost -effectively deliver those services. Cost effectiveness implies that governments have the task of removing any obstacles that may stand in the way of prompt and efficient service. Certainly, this is the trend in both the UK and Australia. It has become known as PPPs – public private partnerships. This system works almost to perfection because it has the ability to stamp out inefficiencies and cost distortions as well as giving governments control over public service and infrastructure provisioning. In the case of Australia’ development model, virtually all services and infrastructure such as housing, roads, rail and maintenance are delivered in this fashion.
Paul Rappoport – Heritage 21 – 23 August 2011
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