Simplifying the Complexity in the Problem of Choosing the Best Private-Sector Partner

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Qiu P., Sorourkhah A., Kausar N., Cagin T., Edalatpanah S. A.

Systems, vol.11, no.2, 2023 (Scopus) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/systems11020080
  • Journal Name: Systems
  • Journal Indexes: Scopus
  • Keywords: decision making, public-private partnership, single-valued neutrosophic sets, key performance indicators, risk factors
  • Yıldız Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Governments frequently partner with the private sector to provide infrastructure and public services. These cooperations, known as public–private partnerships (PPPs), have often failed. Sometimes, due to the problem’s complexity, the public sector cannot choose the right partner for these projects, which is one of the main reasons for failures. Complexity in such problems is associated with a large number of indicators, imprecise judgments of decision-makers or problem owners, and the unpredictability of the environment (under conditions of uncertainty). Therefore, presenting a simplified algorithm for this complicated process is the primary goal of the current research so that it can consider the problem’s various dimensions. While many researchers address the critical risk factors (CRFs) and others focus on key performance indicators (KPIs), this research has considered both CRFs and KPIs to choose the best private-sector partner. In addition, we used single-valued neutrosophic sets (SVNSs) to collect decision-makers’ views, which can handle ambiguous, incomplete, or imprecise information. Next, by defining the ideal alternative and using the similarity measure, we specified the ranks of the alternative. Additionally, to face the uncertain environment, we examined the performance of options in four future scenarios. The steps of the proposed algorithm are explained in the form of a numerical example. The results of this research showed that by employing a simple algorithm, even people who do not have significant operations research knowledge could choose the best option by paying attention to the dimensions of the problem complexity.