Welcome to the PPP Realities Blog


This page in:

We’re excited to launch this new dedicated blog platform around public-private partnerships (PPP). We envision it as a space for sharing experiences, disseminating knowledge and generating discussion. We hope that this space will be enriched by perspectives from PPP practitioners in governments, from investors, financiers, advisors, associations and so forth. 


Why? There is a danger that public-private partnerships are being oversold.  

Public-private partnerships
can help secure investments,
expertise and other resources
for infrastructure that delivers
essential services like
clean water.

A “disappointment gap” currently exists between high expectations and the sober reality of successfully concluded partnerships. Too much attention is often paid to financing, and not enough to the less glamorous hard work of preparation. There isn’t enough information being collected about performance. And there are different interpretations about what PPP means, exactly.


Right now, the PPP discussion is rhetoric-rich and data-poor. It is expectation-heavy, and cold-light-of-day reality is tougher. That’s a shame, because, when prepared carefully, with full assessment of the different options, and the fiscal/economic/environmental/social implications, PPPs can be a useful tool to help governments improve the quality and reach of their physical and social infrastructure services. 


We’re working alongside the world’s other multilateral development banks to prepare a joint website for PPPs, which will be called the PPP Lab. That upcoming website – launching in June – will contain quantitative and qualitative information about PPPs and private infrastructure, including the Private Participation in Infrastructure Database, the Public-Private Partnerships in Infrastructure Resource Center, Infrascope reports, and the PPP Reference Guide.

In addition, our new online course on PPPs will introduce real-world cases to an audience that doesn’t attend PPP conferences or read development banks’ annual reports.

There are plentiful examples that illustrate the realities, challenges and opportunities that PPPs offer. With your help, we intend to share and explore many of them on this blog. We invite you to read, share and engage with us on these topics and follow us on Twitter at @WBG_PPP.


Laurence Carter

Senior Director, Public-Private Partnerships Group

Join the Conversation

Carl-Henrik Arosenius
April 29, 2015

Interesting and important work.

Roger Burks
May 04, 2015

Thank you for reading the piece and taking time to comment! You might be interested in hearing about our upcoming MOOC on PPPs: http://blogs.worldbank.org/ppps/helping-communicate-potential-ppps-throu.... Thanks again, and we look forward to your continued feedback and participation.

Ahmed SHaukat
May 02, 2015

Look forward to the PPP Lab
Am a great believer in PPP agree with the existing disappointment which is unfortunately as PPP have been sold as a quick fix
Unfortunately there is still not one definition of PPP it means different things to different people and hence the disappointment gap
Trying to do my bit to help am speaking at Ports PPP conference in Doha next week
Hope to catch up with you one of these days
Have moved to Barcelona for a couple of years

Roger Burks
May 13, 2015

Thank you for your comment and feedback, Ahmed. We hope this can become a meeting place where mistakes and learning can be shared, developments institutions can coordinate action, and practitioners can present their findings. We invite you to participate in our upcoming MOOC on PPPs - https://www.coursera.org/course/effectiveppp - and spread the word to your networks as well. Thanks again for taking time to engage.

Marcos Siqueira
May 02, 2015

For 10 years, I have been a client of multilateral development banks supporting PPP programs in a emerging markets. During this time, I have witnessed the absolute relevance of those institutions to provide technical assistance, network, expertise and other resources to allow the design of effective PPP projects and programs. I have also lately followed the efforts of the WBG to reorganize its PPP practice focusing on client needs.
My experience suggests that all those initiatives are significantly more effective when they manage to engage the wider community of practitioners and stakeholders, both nationally and internationally. This engagement lead to exchange of experiences, help to align incentives and can direct expectations and thus foster the effectiveness of PPP projects and programs.
This is why I believe this dedicated Blog can be so relevant in the context of efforts to induce more and better PPPs, particularly in the developing world. I hope this can become a meeting place where mistakes and learning can be shared, Developments institutions can coordinate action, and practitioners can present their findings.
As a Client, I would like to congratulate the WBG for yet another relevant innovation and I look forward to discuss with colleagues around the world and contribute, as Laurence said, to a more data-based discussion about the benefits PPPs can bring to promote socio-economic development.

Roger Burks
May 13, 2015

Thank you for sharing this thoughtful comment and your experience, Marcos. We are keen on all of the above and excited about the sharing of knowledge, lessons learned and peer-to-peer experience this platform as we engage with the world on PPPs. There is plenty we can learn from the past as we enhance our present capacity and knowledge to enable a more informed and educated future.
We hope you'll take part on our upcoming PPP MOOC - https://www.coursera.org/course/effectiveppp - and let your networks know about it as well. Thanks again for taking time to share your thoughts.

Rodrigo Andrade
May 05, 2015

The precise definition of PPPs indeed generates confusion, sometimes. In Brazil, the term PPP is used to distinguish contracts where government subsidies are allowed from concessions, where transfers are legally prohibited. In fact, both types of contracts fit the World Bank definition of PPP.
In economics, the term PPP is used to differ from conventional public provision, and usually denoties the bundling of building and operations activities under the private partner's resposibilities.
I am looking foward to taking the MOOC.

Roger Burks
May 13, 2015

Hi Rodrigo, we appreciate the time you've taken to read the piece and provide feedback. We definitely encourage discussion and debate about PPPs - it's one of the main reasons we launched this blog. We're also glad you'll be taking the MOOC (https://www.coursera.org/course/effectiveppp). Please feel free to tell others about it - we're looking forward to a robust learning experience with participation from thousands around the world.

May 14, 2015

The website for the online courses is down.

Roger Burks
May 14, 2015

Hi Sheila, thanks for giving us a heads up. I just checked and looks like it's up: https://www.coursera.org/course/effectiveppp. Please make sure your web browser is updated to the latest version.

June 06, 2015

"rhetoric-rich and data-poor". How apt. It is great that the World Bank Group is intervening in several ways to correct this. I'm currently taking the #PPPMOOC and will be sure to follow up on the other resources, including this blog.

Dr. Mohamed Taher Abdelrazik Hamada, Ph.D
March 27, 2018

Very nice and appreciated comments
Yours Very Respectfully,
Dr. Mohamed Taher Abdelrazik Hamada, Ph.D

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