Defining the public interests in airport development decision-making

Donnet, Timothy & Van de Riet, Odette (2010) Defining the public interests in airport development decision-making. In World Conference on Transport Research, 11-15 July 2010, Instituto Superior Técnico, Lisbon.


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Residents, businesses, local, state and national government stakeholders all want to have their say when airports expand or develop. While stakeholder engagement is increasingly a strategy employed for managing the tensions attracted to airport development, different stakeholders have different expectations and demands of airports. This requires different approaches to stakeholder engagement. Identifying the public interests that are at stake in developing airports provides an initial step towards building a platform for selecting and applying stakeholder engagement strategies in airport and more general infrastructure contexts.

This paper uses the existing literature of public interests and values to build a general typology of public values for the stakeholders of airport development. A range of semi-privatised and state owned airport case studies from Europe have been used to demonstrate the universal nature of the identified values. The result is a framework that identifies both the substantive and procedural values, separated into local, state/regional and national levels of interest. The typology provides a generalised view of public interests in airport development; however, the public interests identified may be limited to more western oriented societies due to the skew of airport cases reviewed.

Contributions are made to the literature with a typology of public values derived from existing knowledge and explored using empirical case examples. The provided typology enables research of airport development decision-making to delineate public interests both within and between stakeholder groups, and helps to explain the different perspectives that stakeholders have towards airport development. Future research may focus on refining the typology for different types of airport governance structures, such as differences between public values in state and market-led airport development; include more airport cases from eastern societies to draw parallels or differences between western and eastern societies; or utilise the typology as a framework for analysing changes in public interests of airports over time.

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ID Code: 31271
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: airport development, urban development, public value, public interest, stakeholders
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > URBAN AND REGIONAL PLANNING (120500) > Transport Planning (120506)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > POLICY AND ADMINISTRATION (160500) > Public Administration (160509)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Management
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2010 [please consult the authors]
Deposited On: 11 Mar 2010 22:55
Last Modified: 10 Aug 2011 18:02

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