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Mega Projects and Governmentality

Authors: Sophie Sturup

Abstract:

Mega urban transport projects (MUTPs) are increasingly being used in urban environments to ameliorate the problem of congestion. However, a number of problems with regard to mega projects have been identified. In particular the seemingly institutionalised over estimation of economic benefits and persistent cost over runs, could mean that the wrong projects are selected, and that the projects that are selected cost more than they should. Studies to date have produced a number of solutions to these problems, perhaps most notably, the various methods for the inclusion of the private sector in project provision. However the problems have shown significant intractability in the face of these solutions. This paper provides a detailed examination of some of the problems facing mega projects and then examines Foucault-s theory of 'governmentality' as a possible frame of analysis which might shed light on the intractability of the problems that have been identified, through an identification of the art of government in which MUTPs occur.

Keywords: Michel Foucault, Governmentality, Mega projects, Transport.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1070505

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