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Evaluating the Socioeconomic Impact of Infrastructure Investment in an Uncertain World

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Economic and Business Aspects of Sustainability".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2021) | Viewed by 49593

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
City and Regional Planning, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, 43210, USA
Interests: regional economic impact analysis; transportation infrastructure; risk and resilience; big data analytics

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Guest Editor
School of Economics and Management, Beijing Jiaotong University, Beijing 100044, China
Interests: transportation economics and policy; high speed railway; government governance
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
School of Economics, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent CT2 7FS, UK;Transport Strategy Centre, Imperial College, London, SW7 2AZ, UK
Interests: transport economics; regional development; European integration

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Infrastructure investment plays an indispensable role in promoting regional economic growth and improving the quality of life. A valid understanding of the socioeconomic impact of transportation infrastructure is fundamental, as it helps government and investment agencies not only justify the return to the investment being deployed, it also facilitates rational decision-making for future investment. While many previous studies have attempted to evaluate the socioeconomic impact of infrastructure investment from both ex-ante and ex-post perspectives, the comprehensive understanding of the extent to which the infrastructure development has affected or is expected to affect society, the economy, and quality of life remains limited. Part of the reason for this is because the world is changing dynamically due to the influences of climate change, geopolitical conflict and cooperation among countries and regions, uncertainty, and policy changes.

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has further enlarged the challenges of infrastructure development. While infrastructure investment strategies in some countries are focused on short-term bailouts as a stimulus for economic growth (especially in relation to recovery from the economic impacts of COVID-19), to what extent the sustainability in the provision of public transport services (urban transit, international airline) and the long-term survival of services can be ensured remains unclear. These disturbances have made an accurate assessment and understanding of the socioeconomic impacts of infrastructure investment prohibitively challenging.

In addition, due to the rapid development and adoption of new services and technologies, such as high-speed rail, autonomous vehicles, 5G telecommunication, and Hyperloop systems, new opportunities for infrastructure investment were generated. However, our understanding of the wider socioeconomic impact of the investments in these domains remains scant. Furthermore, while countries in the developing world still suffer from a lack of infrastructure investment to support the rapidly rising demand of socioeconomic activities, other nations in the developed world and the emerging economies (e.g., Brazil, Russia, India, China) also experienced unprecedented challenges of maintaining the equity, resilience, and sustainability of infrastructure planning, finance, operation, and maintenance. Hence, it becomes imperative to develop new knowledge and approaches in order to foster sound strategies to achieve the sustainable development of infrastructure in an uncertain world.

We invite submissions that explore issues related to social, economic, and environmental and comprehensive impact assessment of infrastructure investment, using new data, methods, and concepts. Potential topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Impact assessment of mega-infrastructure projects (e.g., transcontinental railways, urban intelligent transport systems, water conservancy dams);
  • Assessment of the investment in developing resilient infrastructure systems;
  • The socioeconomic impacts of investment in developing new infrastructure systems, (e.g., UAVs, autonomous vehicles, 5G telecommunication, Hyperloop);
  • Impacts of COVID-19 on infrastructure investment (including highway, rail, transit, and airport), and the impact of infrastructure investment in the era of COVID-19;
  • Financial sustainability of infrastructure investment;
  • Impact assessment of infrastructure investment on economic disparity, social equity, and quality of life;
  • Evaluation of the longevity in both the planning and life cycle of infrastructure;
  • New approaches (e.g., new data and methods) for infrastructure investment appraisals; and
  • Government governance, risk control, and policy innovations for infrastructure investment.

To facilitate the development of this Special Issue, special sessions will be hosted at the International Association of China Planning (IACP) annual conference in July 2021 (tentative and subject to change). Please note, however, that this Special Issue is open to all scholars, regardless of their participation in the special sessions.

Timeline

  • Call for papers for this Sustainability SI: 15 December 2020
  • Full manuscript submission to Sustainability open: 1 February 2021
  • Special session at the International Association of China Planning (IACP) annual conference:  July 2021 (tentative and subject to change)
  • Full manuscript submission to Sustainability due: 1 September 2021

All submitted papers should address significant issues pertinent to the themes of this special Issue and fall within the scope of Sustainability. All final submissions must be original and may not be under review by any other journals. Acceptance for publication will be based on referees’ and editors’ recommendations following a standard peer-review process. Criteria for acceptance include originality, contribution, methodology, and scientific merit. All submissions and inquiries should be directed to the attention of Guest Editors.

Asst. Prof. Zhenhua Chen
Prof. Dr. Hongchang Li
Prof. Dr. Roger W. Vickerman
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • socioeconomic impact
  • life-cycle assessment
  • regional disparity
  • infrastructure investment
  • uncertainty
  • sustainability

Published Papers (16 papers)

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Research

24 pages, 1513 KiB  
Article
Impact of High-Speed Rail Construction on the Environmental Sustainability of China’s Three Major Urban Agglomerations
by Sining Zhu, Zhou Zhou, Ran Li and Wenxing Li
Sustainability 2022, 14(5), 2567; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14052567 - 23 Feb 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3477
Abstract
Under the background of global warming, it is of great significance to explore how to realize environmentally sustainable development. This paper takes China’s three major urban agglomerations as the research objects: Yangtze River Delta, Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei, and Pearl River Delta. Generally, we use carbon [...] Read more.
Under the background of global warming, it is of great significance to explore how to realize environmentally sustainable development. This paper takes China’s three major urban agglomerations as the research objects: Yangtze River Delta, Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei, and Pearl River Delta. Generally, we use carbon emission efficiency to represent the sustainable development of the environment. Then we use the city-level panel data of the three urban agglomerations from 2006 to 2019 to construct the slacks-based measure integrating data envelopment (SBM-DEA) model for calculating each city’s carbon dioxide emission efficiency. Finally, we construct the spatial difference-in-differences (SDID) model to explore the impact of high-speed rail construction on each urban agglomeration’s carbon dioxide emission efficiency and its internal mechanism. The findings are as follows: (1) On the whole, high-speed rail construction improves urban agglomerations’ carbon dioxide emission efficiency. Meanwhile, it has a positive spatial spillover effect on surrounding areas. (2) In terms of urban agglomerations, high-speed rail construction has significantly promoted carbon emission efficiency in the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei region. However, it has had negative external effects on the surrounding areas. (3) From the perspective of mechanism analysis, the construction of high-speed rail has promoted manufacturing agglomeration in the Pearl River Delta region and, at the same time, has had a negative impact on the local carbon dioxide emission efficiency. This study has strong policy implications for promoting the sustainable development of the three major urban agglomerations. Full article
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20 pages, 3294 KiB  
Article
The Impact of COVID-19 on High-Speed Rail and Aviation Operations
by Shan Yang and Zhenhua Chen
Sustainability 2022, 14(3), 1683; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031683 - 01 Feb 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2036
Abstract
Intercity transportation systems have experienced severe disruptions since the outbreak of COVID-19. However, it remains unclear how the operations of different systems were affected and whether the pandemic has influenced modal interaction. This paper provides an empirical assessment to address these questions using [...] Read more.
Intercity transportation systems have experienced severe disruptions since the outbreak of COVID-19. However, it remains unclear how the operations of different systems were affected and whether the pandemic has influenced modal interaction. This paper provides an empirical assessment to address these questions using high-speed rail (HSR) and aviation in China as an example. The impact of COVID-19 on aviation and HSR operations was examined both temporally and spatially using a high-dimensional fixed-effect panel model. Using the big data with daily operational frequency for the period of January–June 2020, the study shows that the lockdown of Wuhan had varying effects on the operations of HSR and aviation. In addition, the correlation of operational services between HSR and aviation was found to vary both spatially and temporally during the pandemic. These research findings provide important implications for improving the adaptability of transportation systems and operational resilience. Full article
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27 pages, 2211 KiB  
Article
High-Speed Railway Opening and High-Quality Development of Cities in China: Does Environmental Regulation Enhance the Effects?
by Yuxian Jiang, Xiang Xiao, Xiaoyue Li and Ge Ge
Sustainability 2022, 14(3), 1392; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031392 - 26 Jan 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 3163
Abstract
The continuous improvement of transportation infrastructure is an important support for achieving high-quality development, while the high-quality characteristics of development will inevitably promote the process of economic and social sustainability. From the dual perspectives of economic transformation and people’s social livelihoods, we regard [...] Read more.
The continuous improvement of transportation infrastructure is an important support for achieving high-quality development, while the high-quality characteristics of development will inevitably promote the process of economic and social sustainability. From the dual perspectives of economic transformation and people’s social livelihoods, we regard the opening of a high-speed railway (HSR) in China’s cities as a quasi-natural experiment, and utilize the difference-in-difference (DID) method to examine the impact of improved transportation infrastructure on the high-quality development of prefecture-level cities and its action mechanism. This study is the first to incorporate HSR openings and environmental regulation into the same framework, focusing on the high-quality development problem of cities. The empirical results reveal that: (1) the opening of an HSR can advance industrial structure upgrading and increase social employment level, thereby promoting the high-quality development of cities; (2) the intensity of environmental regulation is an important action mechanism that affects such relationships, but it presents two different influences on an HSR’s industrial effect and employment effect, that is, inhibition and reinforcement, respectively; and (3) urban heterogeneity tests illustrate that an HSR opening plays a more significant role in promoting the high-quality development of China’s eastern region cities and non-resource-based cities. Our findings are beneficial to improve the effectiveness and accuracy of decision-makers’ investment in transportation infrastructure as well as to facilitate the benign interaction between the national HSR policy and local environmental regulation strategies, thereby achieving the high-quality and sustainable development of urban economy and society. Full article
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24 pages, 1090 KiB  
Article
Research on High-Speed Railway Pricing and Financial Sustainability
by Xiaoyi Hu, Jianqiang Duan and Ran Li
Sustainability 2022, 14(3), 1239; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031239 - 22 Jan 2022
Viewed by 1548
Abstract
With the steady increase of corporate system reform in the railway transportation industry, high-speed railways have accelerated their steps toward marketization, and the market competition they face has become increasingly fierce. In this context, enterprises need to make quick adjustments to new changes [...] Read more.
With the steady increase of corporate system reform in the railway transportation industry, high-speed railways have accelerated their steps toward marketization, and the market competition they face has become increasingly fierce. In this context, enterprises need to make quick adjustments to new changes in order to seize the market share, obtain stable ticket income, and eventually, achieve financial sustainability while ensuring the healthy development of high-speed railways. Thus, it is particularly important to determine a reasonable ticket price. While considering supply and demand, market competition, and passenger utility, this study constructs a model of the passenger flow sharing rate and applies it to modeling the optimal ticket price for high-speed railways, taking the Beijing–Shanghai High-speed Railway as an example for calculating this model. Using the results calculated, this study analyzes the influence of the optimal ticket price on the financial sustainability of the enterprise through use of the evaluation system of financial sustainability established above. The results show that the existing price for a train ticket from of Beijing to Shanghai is not the optimal one, and there is still room for a price increase; the ticket price has an impact on financial sustainability by affecting corporate operating income and cash flow. The study provides a method for formulating the optimal ticket price for high-speed railway travel and enriches the research on the financial sustainability of high-speed railways. Full article
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24 pages, 2202 KiB  
Article
Sustainable Mechanism of the Entrusted Transportation Management Mode on High-Speed Rail and the Impact of COVID-19: A Case Study of the Beijing–Shanghai High-Speed Rail
by Chao Ji, Yanke Yao, Jianqiang Duan and Wenxing Li
Sustainability 2022, 14(3), 1171; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031171 - 20 Jan 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1748
Abstract
The transport management mode fundamentally determines the sustainable development of high-speed rail passenger transport (HSRPT), which was shocked by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. In order to study the sustainable development mechanism of HSRPT and the impact of COVID-19, primarily based on the [...] Read more.
The transport management mode fundamentally determines the sustainable development of high-speed rail passenger transport (HSRPT), which was shocked by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. In order to study the sustainable development mechanism of HSRPT and the impact of COVID-19, primarily based on the data from the Beijing–Shanghai high-speed rail (HSR) taken from 2018, we adopt system dynamics (SD) to provide a scenario simulation method to examination sustainable operation status of HSRPT under the entrusted transportation management mode (ETMM) by VENSIM, and take into account the following two evaluation indicators: economic and operational. The results show the following: (1) Transportation demand and commissioned transportation management fees play a vital role in the sustainable operation of the Beijing–Shanghai HSR, causing significant changes in transportation revenue and transportation costs. (2) COVID-19 had a great impact on the sustainable operation of the Beijing–Shanghai HSR. In 2020, the turnover and transportation profit of the Beijing–Shanghai HSR fell by 74.31% and 49.19%, respectively. In 2022, the transportation profit can be restored to the level of 2019. The study results reveal that Beijing–Shanghai HSR under the ETMM has a good sustainable development capability. Full article
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23 pages, 652 KiB  
Article
High-Speed Railway Opening and Corporate Fraud
by Chen Wang, Jack Strauss and Lei Zheng
Sustainability 2021, 13(23), 13465; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132313465 - 06 Dec 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1765
Abstract
The impact of high-speed railway (HSR) on corporate behavior has recently attracted both practical and theoretical interest. In this paper, based on a sample of A-share listed companies from 2007 to 2020 in China, we use a difference-in-difference model to explore the impact [...] Read more.
The impact of high-speed railway (HSR) on corporate behavior has recently attracted both practical and theoretical interest. In this paper, based on a sample of A-share listed companies from 2007 to 2020 in China, we use a difference-in-difference model to explore the impact of HSR openings on corporate fraud and analyze its mechanism. We find that HSR introduction has several important implications. First, it reduces the tendency and frequency of corporate fraud. Second, HSR opening restrains corporate fraud by improving the external supervision level and reducing the financing constraints of the company. Third, the inhibitory effect of the HSR opening on corporate fraud is significant when the market competition is less intense, and the company’s internal control level is poor. Fourth, after distinguishing types of fraud, HSR opening can still significantly inhibit information disclosure fraud and manager fraud, but not operation fraud. These results indicate that HSR openings promote the flow of information and labor across regions, alleviating the information asymmetry of firms. Our findings are conducive to improving the governance environment of the listed companies, which provides new clues for discovering and restricting corporate fraud. Full article
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23 pages, 651 KiB  
Article
Transportation Infrastructure Construction and High-Quality Development of Enterprises: Evidence from the Quasi-Natural Experiment of High-Speed Railway Opening in China
by Tianjiao Zhao, Xiang Xiao and Qinghui Dai
Sustainability 2021, 13(23), 13316; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132313316 - 01 Dec 2021
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 2511
Abstract
High-quality development of the economy is an important guarantee for economic and business sustainability, and the construction of transportation infrastructure is an important channel to achieving high-quality development. Thus, we take the opening of China’s high-speed railway (HSR) as a quasi-natural [...] Read more.
High-quality development of the economy is an important guarantee for economic and business sustainability, and the construction of transportation infrastructure is an important channel to achieving high-quality development. Thus, we take the opening of China’s high-speed railway (HSR) as a quasi-natural experiment and use the difference-in-difference model to explore the impact and mechanism of HSR on firms’ high-quality development. By using the total factor productivity of enterprises as the proxy for high-quality development, the empirical results show that: (1) the opening of the HSR can significantly promote high-quality development of enterprises; (2) the quality of information disclosure plays a mediating role in such relationships; and (3) the impact of HSR on enterprises’ high-quality development is more significant for enterprises that are located in cities with better business environments. Overall, this research indicates that local infrastructure construction is an important factor to achieve high-quality development of enterprises as well as economic sustainability that cannot be ignored, and this conclusion will be helpful for corporate managers in enhancing the quality of information disclosure, as well as for local governments to attach more importance to optimizing business environments to achieve high-quality development and economic sustainability. Full article
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24 pages, 365 KiB  
Article
Connecting into the Social Sustainability Effects of Infrastructure through China’s Digital Silk Road: Issues, Indices, and Indications
by Jean-Marc F. Blanchard and Bas Hooijmaaijers
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12739; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212739 - 18 Nov 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2794
Abstract
There is a heated debate about the social-sustainability implications of infrastructure. We engage this debate by delving into China’s Digital Silk Road (DSR), an important component of China’s infrastructure-centric Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Optimists and pessimists have offered strong views about the [...] Read more.
There is a heated debate about the social-sustainability implications of infrastructure. We engage this debate by delving into China’s Digital Silk Road (DSR), an important component of China’s infrastructure-centric Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Optimists and pessimists have offered strong views about the DSR’s social-sustainability implications. Unfortunately, there is a dearth of analytical tools and in-depth studies which can be used to judge their competing arguments. In this article, we address these problems in two ways. First, we advance an original scheme for operationalizing social sustainability. Second, we use our framework to systematically analyze the DSR’s social-sustainability effects in Ethiopia, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates, and Hungary. Our research indicates that much of the positive and negative commentary about the DSR’s social-sustainability implications is problematic. None of our cases show significant year-to-year changes in political or quality-of-life social-sustainability benchmarks. Indeed, our analysis indicates that analysts must pay close attention to the political and economic context to understand the social-sustainability patterns associated with DSR infrastructure. Finally, it suggests that the social-sustainability implications of DSR infrastructure are dependent on its scale and nature. These findings have ramifications for broader debates about the socioeconomic impact of infrastructure. Full article
17 pages, 1719 KiB  
Article
The Digitalization Transformation of Commercial Banks and Its Impact on Sustainable Efficiency Improvements through Investment in Science and Technology
by Lihua Zuo, Jack Strauss and Lijuan Zuo
Sustainability 2021, 13(19), 11028; https://doi.org/10.3390/su131911028 - 05 Oct 2021
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 10221
Abstract
The COVID-19 epidemic has accelerated the digital economy’s pervasiveness throughout the Chinese economy, leading to a sharp rise in demand for “contactless” services in the financial industry. We examine the digital transformation of the Chinese banking industry using the DEA–Malmquist index method, supplemented [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 epidemic has accelerated the digital economy’s pervasiveness throughout the Chinese economy, leading to a sharp rise in demand for “contactless” services in the financial industry. We examine the digital transformation of the Chinese banking industry using the DEA–Malmquist index method, supplemented by a distance function and time to compare the dynamic changes of productivity. Our paper then conducts an empirical study on the digital transformation of Chinese commercial banks based on their improvements in efficiency. We analyze banks with superior efficiency in science and technology investment and evaluate their digital maturity and digital transformation experience. Results show that digitalization investment has contributed to substantial production efficiency improvement for commercial banks; however, heterogeneity exists across banks. We further advocate a path for banks’ digital transformation based on theoretical research and empirical digital transformation experience in this area. Full article
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32 pages, 2376 KiB  
Article
Can Rural Road Construction Promote the Sustainable Development of Regional Agriculture in China?
by Zhou Zhou, Jianqiang Duan, Wenxing Li and Shaoqing Geng
Sustainability 2021, 13(19), 10882; https://doi.org/10.3390/su131910882 - 30 Sep 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 3959
Abstract
The sustainable development of agriculture is significant in protecting natural resources, protecting the ecological environment, ensuring food security, and eliminating poverty. Rural road construction promotes the flow of labor and capital between urban and rural areas, and plays a vital role in agricultural [...] Read more.
The sustainable development of agriculture is significant in protecting natural resources, protecting the ecological environment, ensuring food security, and eliminating poverty. Rural road construction promotes the flow of labor and capital between urban and rural areas, and plays a vital role in agricultural production and rural revitalization. This study aims to analyze the effect of rural road construction on the sustainable development of regional agriculture in China. We select five-dimensional indexes of population, society, economy, resources, and environment and use the entropy method to calculate the agricultural sustainable development index of each province in China. Then, we construct the spatial econometric model to explore the influence based on the panel data of 31 provinces in China from 2002 to 2018. The benchmark results show that rural road construction significantly promotes the sustainable development of agriculture; however, it has a negative impact on environmental sustainability, and the influence is lagging. The results are also heterogeneous among regions. Rural road construction has significantly promoted the sustainable development of agriculture in eastern and central areas, but has no significant impact on western regions. The reason is that the siphoning effect caused by the construction of rural roads has led to a loss of talents and capital in the western region, which harms the sustainable development of the population and resource system. This effect offsets the positive effect of the other three systems. This research has substantial policy implications for promoting rural revitalization and agricultural development. Full article
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19 pages, 2245 KiB  
Article
Research on the Impact of Urban Rail Transit on the Financing Constraints of Enterprises from the Perspective of Sustainability
by Rong Yang, Linda Yin-nor Tjia and Matthias Finger
Sustainability 2021, 13(19), 10543; https://doi.org/10.3390/su131910543 - 23 Sep 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1392
Abstract
Urban rail transit (URT) is closely related to the sustainable development of the city. In addition to the traffic improvements, it also brings social and economic benefits. From the perspective of sustainability, we discuss the effect of urban rail transit on financing constraints [...] Read more.
Urban rail transit (URT) is closely related to the sustainable development of the city. In addition to the traffic improvements, it also brings social and economic benefits. From the perspective of sustainability, we discuss the effect of urban rail transit on financing constraints of companies listed on the China A-share stock market (A-share, common stocks issued by companies registered in China for domestic institutions, organizations or individuals to subscribe and trade in RMB) and further explore whether the level of financial development has an effect on the above relationship. The results show that: (1) Financing constraints are common among sample enterprises, and the later the opening year of urban rail transit, the greater the degree of financing constraints; (2) The development of urban rail transit is beneficial to alleviate the level of financing constraints of listed companies, and this mitigating effect mainly exists in the samples with high relevance to urban rail transit; (3) The higher the level of financial development, the smaller the degree of corporate financing constraints; (4) Financial development may influence the relationship between financing constraints and urban rail transit. With the improvement of the financial development level, the alleviating effect of urban rail transit on corporate financing constraints is less pronounced. This study gives some references to improve the financing constraints of listed companies and for promoting the sustainable development of urban rail transit. Full article
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17 pages, 2131 KiB  
Article
Sustainable Construction and Financing—Asset-Backed Securitization of Expressway’s Usufruct with Redeemable Rights
by Qiming Zhang, Linda Yin-nor Tjia, Biyue Wang and Aksel Ersoy
Sustainability 2021, 13(16), 9113; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13169113 - 14 Aug 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2179
Abstract
Asset-backed securitization will greatly promote the sustainability of infrastructure construction and financing. However, there are quite limited researches conducted in this field. Given the project characteristics of infrastructure project securities, this paper proposes the issuance steps of redeemable asset-backed notes (ABN) based on [...] Read more.
Asset-backed securitization will greatly promote the sustainability of infrastructure construction and financing. However, there are quite limited researches conducted in this field. Given the project characteristics of infrastructure project securities, this paper proposes the issuance steps of redeemable asset-backed notes (ABN) based on the infrastructure project’s usufruct as the basic asset. Taking the expressway franchise as an example, the issuing scale and coupon rate of the redeemable ABN are determined by the expected cash flow of the expressway, the term structure of random interest rates, and the option-adjusted spread (OAS). In addition, this research analyzes the duration, convexity, and OAS. Full article
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20 pages, 281 KiB  
Article
Public–Private Partnership Infrastructure Investment and Sustainable Economic Development: An Empirical Study Based on Efficiency Evaluation and Spatial Spillover in China
by Bingyao Chen
Sustainability 2021, 13(15), 8146; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13158146 - 21 Jul 2021
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 2651
Abstract
Public–private partnership (PPP), an innovative mode of infrastructure investment, has been widely applied in China and has become an essential policy tool with which to promote sustainable economic development. In order to comprehensively evaluate the economic consequences, using 31 provinces in China from [...] Read more.
Public–private partnership (PPP), an innovative mode of infrastructure investment, has been widely applied in China and has become an essential policy tool with which to promote sustainable economic development. In order to comprehensively evaluate the economic consequences, using 31 provinces in China from 2003 to 2018 as samples, first, stochastic frontier analysis was performed to measure the input–output efficiency of infrastructure investment to evaluate the economic sustainability and efficiency of PPP compared to single government-led investment mode. Next, the overall economic growth effect of PPP was verified. Further, from the perspective of sustainable development of regional economies, the double-fixed effect spatial Durbin model was adopted to empirically test the spatial spillover effect of PPP and clarify its industrial heterogeneity. The results show the following. (1) The average input–output efficiency of infrastructure is 0.449, revealing a distribution law of decreasing from east to west and remarkable regional variation. However, a good trend of improvement emerged, reflecting the economic sustainability of infrastructure investment, and PPP has played a positive role in promoting it. (2) PPP has significant and positive economic growth and spatial spillover effects, which can promote regional economic integration, embodying its economic sustainability function. (3) The economic impact of PPP has significant industrial heterogeneity. Transportation PPP can bring greater economic benefits, confirming the vital position of transportation infrastructure in the sustainable development of regional economies. Energy and water PPP have positive externalities. All of this provides powerful and reliable proof of the realization of sustainable economic development under the regional virtuous circle driven by infrastructure investment through PPP. Full article
17 pages, 256 KiB  
Article
Enterprises’ R&D Investment, Venture Capital Syndication and IPO Underpricing
by Xuemeng Guo, Kai Li, Siyi Yu and Bolu Wei
Sustainability 2021, 13(13), 7290; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13137290 - 29 Jun 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2567
Abstract
Based on the data of companies that got ChiNext listed from 2009 to 2018, this paper empirically studies the relationship among R&D investment, venture capital (VC) syndication and IPO underpricing. It is found that there is a significant positive correlation between R&D investment [...] Read more.
Based on the data of companies that got ChiNext listed from 2009 to 2018, this paper empirically studies the relationship among R&D investment, venture capital (VC) syndication and IPO underpricing. It is found that there is a significant positive correlation between R&D investment and IPO underpricing, indicating that the higher the R&D investment is, the higher the IPO underpricing degree is; the intervention of VC syndication plays a role of “adverse selection” instead of giving play to its advantages of sharing information, which intensifies the positive correlation between R&D investment and IPO underpricing. Further analysis shows that the reputation of the leading VC in syndication can play a negative regulating role; the higher the reputation of the leading VC is, the more it can play the “certification effect”, reduce the information asymmetry caused by R&D investment, therefore alleviating the IPO underpricing caused by R&D investment. Full article
23 pages, 283 KiB  
Article
How Does Transportation Infrastructure Improve Corporate Social Responsibility? Evidence from High-Speed Railway Openings in China
by Lei Zheng, Xuemeng Guo and Libin Zhao
Sustainability 2021, 13(11), 6455; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13116455 - 06 Jun 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2722
Abstract
The socioeconomic impacts of infrastructure investment are worth examining in both academic and practical areas. Regarding Chinese high-speed railway construction, the existing literature mainly focuses on the macro-economic level consequences of high-speed railway openings, leaving the micro-economic level impacts commonly untested. Using archival [...] Read more.
The socioeconomic impacts of infrastructure investment are worth examining in both academic and practical areas. Regarding Chinese high-speed railway construction, the existing literature mainly focuses on the macro-economic level consequences of high-speed railway openings, leaving the micro-economic level impacts commonly untested. Using archival data of Chinese listed companies from 2009 to 2018 and the difference-in-difference (DID) approach, this paper examines the influential effect of Chinese high-speed railway openings on corporate social responsibility (CSR) performance. Empirical results show that high-speed railway openings can significantly improve Chinese listed companies’ CSR performance, and this positive effect is more salient when companies are experiencing lower information transparency. Mediating effect tests illustrate that the increased investor site visits caused by high-speed railway openings are one internal mechanism behind the main connection. Overall, from a micro-level perspective, this article provides additional evidence on the socioeconomic impact of transportation infrastructure investments. Full article
18 pages, 266 KiB  
Article
Infrastructure Public–Private Partnership (PPP) Investment and Government Fiscal Expenditure on Science and Technology from the Perspective of Sustainability
by Chang Liu
Sustainability 2021, 13(11), 6193; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13116193 - 31 May 2021
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 2549
Abstract
In the environment of the continuous development of the Public–Private Partnership (PPP) model, China’s “dual circulation” development pattern orientation and “new normal” economic development reform provide the foundation for the development of the PPP model in the field of infrastructure. A good government [...] Read more.
In the environment of the continuous development of the Public–Private Partnership (PPP) model, China’s “dual circulation” development pattern orientation and “new normal” economic development reform provide the foundation for the development of the PPP model in the field of infrastructure. A good government investment structure and governance environment will help to improve the financial sustainability of infrastructure investment. This paper studies the mechanism of the relationship between fiscal expenditure on science and technology and the development of infrastructure PPP models based on the data of provincial PPP projects in the World Bank database and carries out an empirical analysis. The results show that the positive effect of government fiscal expenditure on science and technology and the development of the infrastructure PPP model in local regions is significant. In addition, intergovernmental competition within the political system of China will have a restraining effect on this relationship. This has certain theoretical and practical significance for the construction and implementation of the mechanism underlying intergovernmental behavior and the infrastructure PPP model. Full article
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