This paper is a case study about the nine PPP water utilities in the Philippines that have attained international water performance standards across the board. And this was done on an inclusive basis where even the poor were served with 24/7 pressurized service. The nine utilities were widespread throughout the three major provinces of Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. This is highly unusual. (The only other country I know about that has also attained widespread international standards is Senegal. Allan Locussol has written about those projects for the Bank.) World Bank involvement has been continuous in these projects over a 20 + period and more recently followed by Bank staff (now retired) Vijay Jagannathan. The case study was authored by myself, Vijay, and Donald Strombom, former chief of Central Projects, the first experiment in the Bank for what was then called "New Style Projects", and later chief of Bank wide procurement and the author of much of present day procurement guidelines. The task ahead is to explain why these particular projects attained international standards over broad demographic areas.
The lens for the case study was transaction cost economics (TCE) and in particular looked at the project as a "problematic dynamic of constant incomplete contracting whose survival depends on the maintenance of equilibrium of complex character...[This] calls for readjustment of processes internal to the organization...,[whence] the center of our interest is the processes by which [adaptation] is accomplished". An interesting aspect about these lens is that it came from a manager of a large American corporation in the early 1930s. In writing about the organization he helped to manage for many years, Chester Barnard described General Motors as above. (Barnard, 1938:6, emphasis added by Williamson, 1996) I believe this was his description of General Motors before the advent of the modern corporation,