Good practice for involvement in a major project, lessons from the Opuha Dam Project

What Was the Purpose of Our Review?

Public sector entities, especially local authorities, are involved in largescale capital projects. These projects:

  • can be complex and, therefore, expose all parties to considerable risk;
  • are generally expensive;
  • often involve a number of entities from both the private and public sectors; and
  • are often unique in nature and not likely to be repeated.

The purpose of our review was to see what messages for good practice we could find from looking at one such large-scale project. While much is known about the circumstances of the breach of the Opuha Dam, the lessons for public authorities that might be involved in such projects have not hitherto been explored...