Policy and Regulatory Reform of Construction Procurement and embedding reforms in contemporary practice

  • Walter Menteth (Participant)

Impact: Public Policy Impacts, Cultural & Creative Impacts, Economic & Commercial Impacts

Description of impact

International, EU and national impacts on policy & regulatory framework through changes called for and achieved to date in EU & UK Procurement embodied within the repeal of:
•Directive 2004/18/EC (effective 18 April 2016).
The reformed:
•Directive 2014/24/EU (entered into force effective April 2014)
•Public Contract Regulations 2015 (England Wales and N. Ireland)
•Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2015, effective 18 April 2016
•The EU commitment to give consideration to seeking “where possible and appropriate, an increase of the threshold amounts” at the next World Trade Organisation General Procurement Agreement (WTO GPA) negotiation round (Art 92).

Some examples:-
•New SME friendly legislation incl:- proportionately mitigated turnover (Art 58.3 limitation to max 2x a contracts value.), PI and experience criteria; free documentation (Art 53); constraint on contract aggregation (Art 46.1 on an apply or explain principle.); the European Single Procurement Document (Art. 59 ESPD), structure, language and legal clarity simplified to improve transparency (UK 1st use in transposition of a copy out of the Directive).
•Encouraging more diverse procurement practices: negotiated procedures (Art 32 now incentivised) and consortia practice;
•Self certification (Art 59) and the verification process for exclusion criteria prior to award (which is now no longer applicable Art 64.6,)
•Capacity to reject abnormally low tenders (Art 69); timescale reductions;; transparency commitments; and full digital procurement.
The Public Contract Regulations 2015 (England Wales & N. Ireland)
•Contracts Finder a national digital procurement portal now transparently advertising all notices; PQQs for below EU thresholds contracts now banned; Sub-contractors have 30 days payment terms embedded.
•UK 1st use in transposition of a Procurement Directive of the copy out principle – further simplifying and aligning regulatory comprehension. Clarity now given in the transcript of the directive & PCR2015 between eg. ‘shall’ and ‘may’ to better distinguish mandatory and non-mandatory clauses.
Development and embedding of standard PQQs (Prequalification questionnaires - PAS 91 & Crown Commercial Services standard PQQ’s)

Further examples of changes are described here www.projectcompass.co.uk/index.php?page=compass&sub=general_guidance&item=7
Continuing impact is being undertaken generated from this research by a range of other current engagements

Who is affected

The Public construction sector - International, EU and national; with specific emphasis on SME's and construction design professionals, and in consequence the values that are delivered to society.


This research has aimed to deliver ongoing, long term economic and cultural impacts, contributing towards beneficial change in scoping, processes, procedures, practices and outputs amongst procurement authorities, industry, legislators and construction professionals, whilst also raising awareness of the salient issues.

The underpinning hypothesis of this body of research derives from:
• Commercial practice located research and experience by the firm of Walter Menteth Architects developed initially from engagement in a number of public contract bid submissions and contract awards made through the proscribed procedures of the EU Directives.
• The hypothesis were developed by supplementary research incl. document reviews, evaluation, additional empirical research, international engagement, consultations and their responses, and surveys across the policy and practice remit.
From which developed an iterative synthesise developing progressive policy alignments,
• In summary conclusion the hypothesis called for comprehensive reform to achieve the impacts identified below amongst others.
Impact statusClosed
Impact date1 Dec 2009
Category of impactPublic Policy Impacts, Cultural & Creative Impacts, Economic & Commercial Impacts
Impact levelBenefit (delivered impact)


  • procurement
  • competitions
  • public policy
  • construction
  • architecture
  • design
  • economic sustainability
  • standards
  • regulations
  • transparency
  • reform
  • legislation
  • efficiency
  • effectiveness