AbstractWhat is a successful public–private partnership (P3)? The existing literature has continued to explore critical success factors (CSFs), key performance indicators (KPIs), and P3 drivers that are linked to P3 performance and outcomes, but some fundamental variations remain in the use of such factors and metrics to assess P3s. Studies have characterized CSFs as the “ingredients” necessary for P3 success and KPIs as the “metrics” to evaluate P3 outcomes or performance. As work in the area has progressed, the literature has evolved to consider CSFs and KPIs more holistically by broadening the factors considered to encompass social, political, economic, and financial categories. These areas in the literature are rather distinct, yet CSFs and KPIs sometimes serve as substitutes for one another, because the definition of and classification between CSFs and KPIs lack clarity. To address this issue, this work characterizes and synthesizes the literature on CSFs and KPIs to identify how to employ these factors and metrics to assess various aspects of P3 performance in transportation projects. CSFs identified were grouped into six categories such as project planning and environment and lifecycle perspectives, while KPIs were combined into four categories such as project delivery and socioeconomic. This work updates prior literature reviews, which is an important contribution because papers addressing CSFs and KPIs in P3s have increased in the last several years. Additionally, the distinction between CSFs and KPIs is clarified, and knowledge gaps such as the relationships between CSFs and future areas of research are presented.

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