UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Quantification of risks during feasibility analysis for capital projects Ranasinghe, Kulatilaka Arthanayake Malik Kumar


The purpose of this thesis is to propose a consistent theory and a model based on it to estimate the uncertainty of project duration, cost, revenue, and net present value probabilistically. The model can be used to assist decision making on such strategic, feasibility analysis issues as contingency provision, reliability of an estimate for the "go-no go" decision, adopting phased or fast-track construction, etc. Project cost and revenue are evaluated in terms of current and discounted dollars, thereby emphasising the economic effect of time and inflation on net present value which is considered as the decision criterion. The model is derived mathematically by treating all the issues which effect the estimation of project cost, duration and revenue through the mechanism of linked work packages. Issues found to be significant in the evaluation of work package duration are: the scope of work, the productivity, and the labour usage. For work package cost they are: the duration and the starting time, unit rates for labour, equipment, and materials, labour and equipment usage, sub-contractor and indirect cost, inflation and interest rates. For revenue the issues are: the gross revenue, operating & maintenance cost, inflation rates, duration, and the starting time. Moments of work package cost, duration and revenue streams are first evaluated using subjective estimates of percentiles for the independent variables, deriving moment information from these estimates, and then processing this information using the expectation operator on the Taylor series expansion of the performance measure about the mean. These moments along with the Pearson family of distributions are used to quantify the uncertainty of project duration, cost, revenue, and net present value. The decision maker is provided with probabilistic estimates, of duration, cost and revenue at both the work package/revenue stream and project levels and of the net present value. A computer program is developed to implement the proposed theory and to organise and simplify the calculation process.

Item Media

Item Citations and Data


For non-commercial purposes only, such as research, private study and education. Additional conditions apply, see Terms of Use https://open.library.ubc.ca/terms_of_use.