Taking an institutional perspective, in this article we develop an index of the governmental support for public private partnership (PPP) — a ‘PPP Governmental Support Index’ (GSI) — which aims to measure the extent to which national governments provide an institutional framework that is either conducive or preventive for the introduction and diffusion of PPPs within transport infrastructure and other sectors. First, based on a substantive review of the literature, we define the elements of the PPP GSI, including the policy and political commitment regarding PPPs, the legal and regulatory framework, and the presence/absence of dedicated PPP-supporting arrangements. Second, we calculate the PPP GSI for 20 European countries, cluster them and compare similarities and differences in national governmental support of infrastructure PPPs. Third, we explore the potential link between national institutional index scores and infrastructure PPP activity in the 20 countries. Lastly, we discuss the potential and usefulness of the presented PPP GSI, as well as methodological limitations, and elaborate on how this index might be utilised to strengthen future comparative research on PPP in transport and other sectors.