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UCL to train PFI and PPP project directors

6 March 2008

UCL Quad

UCL has signed a contract with 4ps (the Public Private Partnership Programme) to deliver the first formal training course specifically designed for directors of Private Finance Initiative (PFI), Public-Private Partnership (PPP) and other complex projects, it was announced today.

Government has been committed to encouraging private investment in support of public facilities such as schools and hospitals for the last decade. However, it has been recognised by bodies such as the National Audit Office and the Public Accounts Committee that the management of these projects needs to improve in order to ensure that contracts deliver value for money.

The new Project Directors Development Programme (PDDP), run by 4ps in partnership with UCL and Constructing Excellence, will enable project directors from the public and private sectors to understand every aspect of the procurement process and equip them with the necessary leadership, communication, decision-making and negotiation skills to effectively and efficiently lead the delivery of successful projects. The one-year modular course will include practical assignments to ensure the learning can be transferred directly to benefit the individual, their project and their employer.

Andrew Edkins, course director for the MSc in the Interdisciplinary Management of Projects at the UCL Bartlett School of Construction & Project Management, who is UCL’s lead academic for the PDDP, said: “UCL has been researching and teaching on issues of PFI, PPP, and the management of major projects for many years now and so we are eagerly looking forward to working with 4ps to create and deliver a precedent-setting course. UCL and 4ps, together with experts from Constructing Excellence, will establish PDDP as the course that will give project directors the tools, knowledge, and understanding that will allow them to further improve the performance of challenging public sector initiated projects.”

Alan Munro, 4ps’ Project Director, said: “We are delighted to announce the PDDP contract between 4ps and UCL.  There are approximately 500 projects within local government yet, until now, there has been no formal training expressly developed for those responsible for leading their procurement and delivery. We look forward to working with an academic institution that has such a high global reputation for excellence as UCL. We are sure this partnership will deliver a training programme that will equip project directors from both the public and private sectors with the necessary expertise and commercial skills to get good value for money.”

The PDDP will launch in April, with the first course starting in July. The course will be available to all project directors and senior project managers within local authorities and private organisations involved in delivering PFI, PPP and other complex projects.

To find out more, follow the links at the top of this item.