Reviewing the Accuracy of UK Highways Agency Forecasts: Analysis of the POPE Initiative



Reviewing the Accuracy of UK Highways Agency Forecasts: Analysis of the POPE Initiative

Authors

R Bain, RBconsult, UK

Description

This paper reviews the UK Highways Agency?s POPE initiative

Abstract

Reviewing the accuracy of UK Highways Agency forecasts: analysis of the POPE initiative

This paper reviews the UK Highways Agency?s POPE initiative (Post-Opening Project Evaluation of Major Schemes). The Highways Agency defines ?major schemes? as those costing more than £5 million ? effectively bypasses, motorway widening projects and large junction improvements that have been included in the Agency?s Programme of Major Schemes. The POPE study looks at the outturn benefits and costs of the schemes and contrasts those with expectations (predicted values). This paper independently reviews the Highways Agency?s forecasting performance and compares it with the findings from other studies examining predictive accuracy.

This paper reviews the UK Highways Agency?s POPE initiative (Post-Opening Project Evaluation of Major Schemes). The Highways Agency defines ?major schemes? as those costing more than £5 million ? effectively bypasses, motorway widening projects and large junction improvements that have been included in the Agency?s Programme of Major Schemes. The POPE study looks at the outturn benefits and costs of the schemes and contrasts those with expectations (predicted values). This paper independently reviews the Highways Agency?s forecasting performance and compares it with the findings from other studies examining predictive accuracy.


By their nature, all forecasts incorporate uncertainties and hence retain the potential for error. The author maintains that perfect forecasts are unachievable and, instead, focuses on the likely error ranges that might be expected to surround ?good? forecasts. The forecasting performance of the Highways Agency is then reviewed in that unique context.

Publisher

Association for European Transport