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Boes, H and Dorée, A (2008) Public procurement of local authorities in the Netherlands: a case of breaking tradition for a more strategic approach?. In: Dainty, A (Ed.), Proceedings 24th Annual ARCOM Conference, 1-3 September 2008, Cardiff, UK. Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 477–86.

  • Type: Conference Proceedings
  • Keywords: contracts; local authorities; outsourcing; policy; procurement
  • ISBN/ISSN: 978-0-9552390-1-4
  • URL: http://www.arcom.ac.uk/-docs/proceedings/ar2008-477-486_Boes_and_Dor�e.pdf
  • Abstract:
    The use of integrated contracts / innovative procurement has been a subject of debate and research in the Netherlands for the last decade and has subsequently resulted in a large research programme investigating the reform of the construction industry. At the end of the 1990s an "Innovative Procurement" (IP) programme was implemented to increase the use of integrated contract forms. This programme was adopted by the state agencies Rijkswaterstaat, ProRail and the Rijksgebouwendienst. For these organisations integrated contracts are the staring point for their procurement strategy and implementation. However, local authorities appear cautious to change their traditional tendering policy towards a more strategic outsourcing policy. Several studies have been conducted, targeting/investigating changes to procurement policy over time within municipalities. The results of studies so far relating to the use of different contract forms and barriers for implementation by local authorities will be presented. The results show little change in policy and implementation during the last decade. Currently only a few local authorities are moving away from traditional procurement methods to using a more strategic outsourcing approach. The majority appear to be using more integrated contract forms in an experimental/incidental way but not strategically. Also, despite experiencing various problems with traditional contract forms, the aspiration to change policy and implementation is absent. The responsible managers therefore choose a cautious and habitual approach. Yet, there is some positive movement. Due to - national - pressure on local authorities, they seem to be open to a more strategic outsourcing and tendering policy. The evaluation and discussion subsequently focuses on how a more strategic approach can be implemented given the influence of the different decision makers.