nep-eff New Economics Papers
on Efficiency and Productivity
Issue of 2014‒12‒08
twenty-two papers chosen by

  1. Profit Efficiency of the South Australian Rock Lobster Fishery: Nerlovian and Directional Distance Function Approach By Stephanie McWhinnie
  2. A meta-regression analysis of frontier efficiency estimates from Africa By Ogundari, Kolawole
  4. Feeding Practices and Input Cost Performance in U.S. Hog Operations: The Case of Split-Sex and Phase Feeding By Schulz, Lee L.; Hadrich, Joleen C.
  5. Productivity effects of sustainable intensification: The case of Urea deep placement for rice production in Niger State, Nigeria: By Liverpool-Tasie, Lenis Saweda O.; Adjognon, Serge; Kuku-Shittu, Oluyemisi
  6. Allocation of human capital and innovation at the frontier: Firm-level evidence on Germany and the Netherlands By Bartelsmann, Eric; Dobbelaere, Sabien; Peters, Bettina
  7. Decomposing Profit Efficiency using a Slack-based Directional Distance Function By Rolf Fare; Hirofumi Fukuyama; Shawna Grosskopf; Valentin Zelenyuk
  8. Stochastic Frontier Yield Function Analysis to Predict Returns to a New Crop: An Example of Camelina Sativa Yields Conditional on Local Factor Levels By Kotsiri, Sofia; Zering, Kelly; Mayer, Michelle
  9. Efficiency of Hospitals in the Czech Republic: Conditional Efficiency Approach By Lenka Šastná; Jana Votápková
  10. Spatiotemporal Analysis of Dairy Farm Productivity, Size, and Entry-Exit in the US By Heesun, Jang; Xiaodong, Du
  11. Appropriability Mechanisms, Innovation and Productivity: Evidence from the UK By Bronwyn H. Hall; Vania Sena
  12. The Role of Fixed Cost and Non-Discretionary Variables in Fisheries: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation By Stephanie McWhinnie
  13. On the World Productivity Distribution: Recent Convergence and Divergence Patterns By Mendez-Guerra, Carlos
  14. The Empirics of Agglomeration Economies By Combes, Pierre-Philippe; Gobillon, Laurent
  15. Empirical Findings from Dutch Food Industry By van der Vorst, Jack G.A.J.; Peeters, Lotte; Bloemhof, Jacqueline M.
  16. Maize Yield Response to Nitrogen in Malawi’s Smallholder Production Systems By Snapp, Sieg; Jayne, T.S.; Mhango, Wezi; Ricker-Gilbert, Jacob
  17. The impact of water users' associations on the productivity of irrigated agriculture in Pakistani Punjab By Mekonnen, Dawit; Channa, Hira; Ringler, Claudia
  18. New Linked Data on Research Investments: Scientific Workforce, Productivity, and Public Value By Lane, Julia; Owen-Smith, Jason; Rosen, Rebecca; Weinberg, Bruce A.
  19. “Does absorptive capacity determine collaborative research returns to innovation? A geographical dimension” By Erika Raquel Badillo; Rosina Moreno
  20. Is Farm Management Skill Persistent? By Li, Xin; Paulson, Nicholas
  21. Size and economies of scale in higher education and the implications for mergers By Tirivayi J.N.; Maasen van den Brink H.; Groot W.N.J.
  22. Student Scores in Public and Private Schools: Evidence from PISA 2009 By Mahuteau, Stéphane; Mavromaras, Kostas G.

  1. By: Stephanie McWhinnie (School of Economics, University of Adelaide)
    Abstract: Efficiency analysis in fisheries is not uncommon. In the past, efficiency analysis has mainly focused on productivity, cost and revenue, with relatively few investigating profit efficiency. Negative profits and small sample sizes in fisheries have been some of the obstacles diverting attention from this direction. We consider a new approach in the context of fisheries to overcome these challenges and examine profit efficiency in the rock lobster fisheries of South Australia. Specifically, we apply Nerlovian and Directional Distance Function methods to decompose profit efficiency of the rock lobster fishery into technical and allocative efficiencies. We use meta-frontier efficiency techniques to compare the Northern and Southern zone rock lobster fisheries. Results show that profit inefficiency in the South Australian rock lobster fishery can be largely attributed to allocative inefficiency. Results also show significant variability between efficiency levels in the Northern and Southern zones.
    Keywords: fisheries, profit efficiency, nerlovian, directional distance functions, meta-frontier anlysis, bootstrapping
    JEL: Q2 Q22
    Date: 2013–10
  2. By: Ogundari, Kolawole
    Abstract: The study investigates whether African agricultural efficiency levels has been improving or not and what drives its over the years based on 442 frontier studies using meta-regression analysis. The results show that mean efficiency estimates from studies decrease significantly as year of survey in the primary study increases. Also studies published in Journals, with parametric specification and with panel data produced significantly higher efficiency estimates, while those with a focus on grain crops reported significantly lower efficiency estimates. Other results show that education, followed by experience; extension and credit are the major drivers of agricultural efficiency levels in Africa.
    Keywords: Agriculture, efficiency, meta-analysis, food security, fractional regression, Africa, Food Security and Poverty, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis, C13, Q12, Q18,
    Date: 2014
  3. By: Kibonge Naik, Aziza
    Keywords: Productivity, precipitation, climate change, Environmental Economics and Policy, International Development, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2014
  4. By: Schulz, Lee L.; Hadrich, Joleen C.
    Abstract: This study determines the factors leading to adoption of split-sex and phase feeding by U.S. hog producers and consequently the impact of adoption on operation’s input cost performance. A sample selection model is employed to account for unobservable variables possibly being correlated with the decision to use split-sex and/or phase feeding and input cost performance. Results demonstrate that operations using phase or combination of phase and split sex feeding are most cost effective and productive than hog operations using conventional feeding.
    Keywords: hog production, input cost performance, productivity, Agribusiness, Farm Management, Livestock Production/Industries, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2014
  5. By: Liverpool-Tasie, Lenis Saweda O.; Adjognon, Serge; Kuku-Shittu, Oluyemisi
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy, Consumer/Household Economics, Productivity Analysis, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods,
    Date: 2014
  6. By: Bartelsmann, Eric; Dobbelaere, Sabien; Peters, Bettina
    Abstract: This paper examines how productivity effects of human capital and innovation vary at different points of the conditional productivity distribution. Our analysis draws upon two large unbalanced panels of 6,634 enterprises in Germany and 14,586 enterprises in the Netherlands over the period 2000-2008, considering 5 manufacturing and services industries that differ in the level of technological intensity. Industries in the Netherlands are characterized by a larger average proportion of high-skilled employees and industries in Germany by a more unequal distribution of human capital intensity. In Germany, average innovation performance is higher in all industries, except for low-technology manufacturing, and in the Netherlands the innovation performance distributions are more dispersed. In both countries, we observe non-linearities in the productivity effects of investing in product innovation in the majority of industries. Frontier firms enjoy the highest returns to product innovation whereas for process innovation the most negative returns are observed in the best-performing enterprises of most industries. We find that in both countries the returns to human capital increase with proximity to the technological frontier in industries with a low level of technological intensity. Strikingly, a negative complementarity e¤ect between human capital and proximity to the technological frontier is observed in knowledge-intensive services, which is most pronounced for the Netherlands. Suggestive evidence suggests an interpretation of a winner-takes-all market in knowledge-intensive services.
    Keywords: Human capital,innovation,productivity,quantile regression
    JEL: C10 I20 O14 O30
    Date: 2014
  7. By: Rolf Fare (Oregon State University, USA); Hirofumi Fukuyama (Fukuoka University, Japan); Shawna Grosskopf (Oregon State University, USA); Valentin Zelenyuk (School of Economics, The University of Queensland)
    Abstract: This paper develops a slack-based decomposition of profit efficiency based on a direc- tional distance function. It complements Cooper, Pastor, Aparicio and Borras (2011).
    Date: 2014–09
  8. By: Kotsiri, Sofia; Zering, Kelly; Mayer, Michelle
    Abstract: The purpose of this study is to develop a model that calculates the probability distribution of camelina expected yields dependent on location-related variables such as precipitation, temperature, and solar radiation, as well as nitrogen rate and others. Camelina is an oilseed crop grown in cool climate with low input requirements including little water. The application to camelina addresses challenges in analysis of potential adoption of crops with limited field data. Our data include trials and crop yields in the United States from 2005 to 2012. They have been assembled from various published reports covering a range of locations, seasons, and production methods. We begin by fitting a least squares (LS) regression model to camelina yields. As a robustness check we also apply a stochastic frontier framework under Cobb-Douglas technology. Preliminary results indicate that the average maximum precipitation for the period of interest positively affected the mean camelina yields, whereas it has no impact on yield variability. An increase in average maximum precipitation will more likely decrease the technical inefficiency. Both higher nitrogen rates and higher average maximum growing degree days will more likely increase the average yields. A taller camelina plant positively affects the mean yields and the yield variability. In contrast, total solar radiation is negatively correlated with mean yields and variation. There is still much to be learned about the crop and its best management practices as production expands. The analysis of the interaction of managed input variables and environmental factors will help us assess varietal performance and provide location conditional predictions.
    Keywords: camelina, stochastic frontier, weather, Crop Production/Industries, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2014
  9. By: Lenka Šastná (Institute of Economic Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University in Prague, Smetanovo nábreží 6, 111 01 Prague 1, Czech Republic); Jana Votápková (Institute of Economic Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University in Prague, Smetanovo nábreží 6, 111 01 Prague 1, Czech Republic)
    Abstract: The paper estimates cost efficiency of 81 general hospitals in the Czech Republic during 2006-2010. We employ the conditional order-m approach which is a nonparametric method for efficiency computation accounting for environmental variables. E ffects of environmental variables are assessed using the non-parametric signicance test and partial regression plots. We find not-for-prot ownership and a presence of a specialized center in a hospital to be detrimental to hospital performance in the group of small and medium hospitals, while not-for-prot ownership is favorable to eciency for big hospitals. Generally, hospital performance gets worse in period 2009-2010 because additional revenues received in form of user charges which were introduced in 2008 increase spending of hospitals. Only big hospitals proved to take some cost-saving measures as a reaction to nancial crisis.
    Keywords: Efficiency, hospitals, conditional order-m FDH, Czech Republic
    JEL: D24 I11
    Date: 2014–09
  10. By: Heesun, Jang; Xiaodong, Du
    Abstract: The US dairy industry has experienced significant structural changes in the last few decades. Dairy production has been consolidated into fewer but larger farms, and shifting toward Western and Southern states from traditional dairy regions including the Lake States and Corn Belt. The changes also involved significant entry and exit of small- and medium-sized farms. The paper attempts to characterize patterns of dynamic evolution of productivity, size, and entryexit of dairy farms over time and across major production regions in the US. The analysis sheds light on the contribution of farm and regional characteristics on farm-level productivity changes. Regional differences in climate and economic interconnection between farm productivity and entry-exit are also examined with a focus on the distinction among dairy farm sizes.
    Keywords: Control function, exit probability, heat stress index, production region., Industrial Organization, Livestock Production/Industries, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2014
  11. By: Bronwyn H. Hall; Vania Sena
    Abstract: We use an extended version of the well-established Crepon, Duguet and Mairesse model (1998) to model the relationship between appropriability mechanisms, innovation and firm-level productivity. We enrich this model in several ways. First, we consider different types of innovation spending and study the differences in estimates when innovation spending (rather than R&D spending) is used to predict innovation in the CDM model. Second, we assume that a firm simultaneously innovates and chooses among different appropriability methods (formal or informal) to protect the innovation. Finally, in the third stage, we estimate the impact of the innovation output conditional on the choice of appropriability mechanisms on firms' productivity. We find that firms that innovate and rate formal methods for the protection of Intellectual Property (IP) highly are more productive than other firms, but that the same does not hold in the case of informal methods for the protection of a firm's IP, except possibly for large firms as opposed to SMEs. We also find that this result is strongest for firms in the services, trade, and utility sectors, and negative in the manufacturing sector.
    JEL: L25 O30 O34
    Date: 2014–09
  12. By: Stephanie McWhinnie (School of Economics, University of Adelaide)
    Abstract: We investigate the effects of incorporating a fixed input on equilibrium profits and biomass. We first set up a theoretical model with an input that is fixed in the short-run (vessel size) but that can be used with a variable input at suboptimal capacity. We use this model to get predictions for the impact on profits of exogenous changes in biomass, output price and vessel size. These give us interesting theoretical insights into why it is important to incorporate fixed inputs into profit analysis. We subsequently conduct an empirical investigation to gain an understanding of the effects of these non-discretionary factors on profit efficiency. In particular, we apply a truncated regression with bootstrap methodology to data on individual firm profit efficiency from the South Australian Rock Lobster Fishery. We find empirical support for our predictions that increased biomass and smaller vessel length are associated with higher profits. An additional empirical result is that individual quota management is positively associated with profit efficiency.
    Keywords: biomass, non-discretionary factors, profit efficiency, truncated regression, bootstrap, rock lobster, ITQ
    JEL: Q2 Q22
    Date: 2013–10
  13. By: Mendez-Guerra, Carlos
    Abstract: The post-World War II period has seen substantial changes in labor productivity around the world. Motivated by these changes, this article documents four facts about the world productivity distribution. First, there is a large and increasing disparity between the tails. Second, this disparity rapidly increased in the mid-1980s, slowed down in the next decade, and stabilized in the mid-2000s. Third, overtime, there has been substantial forward and backward mobility of countries and regions. Fourth, the upper tail of the distribution is more sensitive to improvements in human capital, while the lower tail is more sensitive to improvements in efficiency.
    Keywords: labor productivity, world productivity distribution, convergence
    JEL: E10 O40 O50
    Date: 2014–10–10
  14. By: Combes, Pierre-Philippe (GREQAM, University of Aix-Marseille); Gobillon, Laurent (INED, France)
    Abstract: We propose an integrated framework to discuss the empirical literature on the local determinants of agglomeration effects. We start by presenting the theoretical mechanisms that ground individual and aggregate empirical specifications. We gradually introduce static effects, dynamic effects, and workers' endogenous location choices. We emphasise the impact of local density on productivity but we also consider many other local determinants supported by theory. Empirical issues are then addressed. Most important concerns are about endogeneity at the local and individual levels, the choice of a productivity measure between wage and TFP, and the roles of spatial scale, firms' characteristics, and functional forms. Estimated impacts of local determinants of productivity, employment, and firms' locations choices are surveyed for both developed and developing economies. We finally provide a discussion of attempts to identify and quantify specific agglomeration mechanisms.
    Keywords: agglomeration gains, density, sorting, learning, location choices
    JEL: R12 R23 J31
    Date: 2014–09
  15. By: van der Vorst, Jack G.A.J.; Peeters, Lotte; Bloemhof, Jacqueline M.
    Abstract: with environmental and social performance. Therefore, in 2012, we started a collaborative project on this topic named SCALE (Step Change in Agri-food Logistics Ecosystems). SCALE aims to improve the sustainability of food and drink supply chain logistics in the context of rising food demands, increasing energy prices and the need to reduce environmentally damaging emissions. More in particular, SCALE aims to deliver a number of tools and frameworks valuable for the agri-food sector to secure a step change in operational practices, which will improve the efficiency and sustainability of supply chain logistics. In the paper we will present first results of this project. Aim of this paper is (1) to present a sustainability research framework for food supply chains logistics including drivers, strategies, performance indicators, metrics and improvement opportunities to measure and potentially enhance sustainability performances; and (2) to analyse and diagnose the current status of Dutch food & drinks companies and logistics service providers using this framework. Results are found via a literature review, web-based research and structured interviews with Dutch food industry and logistics service industry.
    Keywords: Food Logistics, sustainability, performance, food industry, logistics service providers, Agribusiness, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Industrial Organization, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods,
    Date: 2013–09
  16. By: Snapp, Sieg; Jayne, T.S.; Mhango, Wezi; Ricker-Gilbert, Jacob
    Abstract: Sustainable intensification in crop and livestock production is the foundation for smallholder agriculture in sub-Saharan Africa to adapt to a changing world, to respond to new economic opportunities, and to address poverty reduction and food security. For crop farmers, substantial gains in potential productivity have been made through crop genetics, but these do not translate into production without complementary investments in soil, water, and pest management. Nitrogen is the key driver for cereal crop performance across most environments, both in terms of yield and stability of yield (Vanlauwe et al. 2013). Understanding nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) – here defined as the amount of additional grain harvested per kilogram of nitrogen applied to the grain crop – thus becomes an urgent project that underlies success in agricultural development in the region. Indeed, nitrogen has been identified as one of the grand challenges of the 21st Century given its pivotal role in food production, and nowhere is this more important than in sub-Saharan Africa where fertilizer manufacture infrastructure is non-existent and landlocked countries face fertilizer costs five to ten-fold higher than in the Global North.
    Keywords: Production Economics, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2014–10
  17. By: Mekonnen, Dawit; Channa, Hira; Ringler, Claudia
    Abstract: The government of Pakistan has been involved in the transfer of irrigation management to farmers' organizations at different levels of irrigation networks. Khal Panchayats or water users' associations are mandated to mediate water distribution conflicts, maintain watercourses, report on tampering of outlets and shortage of water supply in the outlet to minor or distributary-level farmer organizations, collect water charges, and provide timely information about rotational running of channels to the farmers. As such, irrigators on watercourses with Khal Panchayats can potentially perform better than those without such institutions. This study explores whether or not the presence of Khal Panchayats on a watercourse and farmer organizations on the canal improves farmers' productivity and the returns to land as was envisioned during the Irrigation Management Transfer.The study utilizes the Pakistan Rural Household Panel Survey (Round 1.5) that has detailed plot level information with highly disaggregated data on irrigation type, methods, and institutions. We used the Hausman-Taylor model to regress the value of output per acre on agricultural inputs, soil and water conservation practices, plot characteristics, household demographics, and the presence of institutions such as Khal Panchayats and farmer organizations. We find that households whose plots are located on watercourses with Khal Panchayats are likely to earn 27 percent more value per acre as compared to farmers on watercourses without such institutions. The effect of the presence of Khal Panchayats is more pronounced in Kharif (the main rainy season) than in the Rabi season. Khal Panchayats lead to improved water management mainly through reducing water theft and conflicts around water, as well as improving maintenance of the watercourse and timing of water arrival. This suggests that while the Irrigation Management Transfer (IMT) progress has been slow in Punjab province, largely due to resistance to change by the vested interests embedded in the Punjab Irrigation Department, even the limited implementation of the IMT has already yielded substantial benefits. The presence of farmers' organization (FO) on the minor or distributary as well as the interaction of the presence of a KP and an FO, are statistically insignificant, though they have the the expected positive signs.
    Keywords: Farmers' organizations, Khal Panchayats, irrigation management transfer, productivity, Pakistan, water users' association, Institutional and Behavioral Economics, International Development, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2014
  18. By: Lane, Julia (American Institutes for Research); Owen-Smith, Jason (University of Michigan); Rosen, Rebecca (American Institutes for Research); Weinberg, Bruce A. (Ohio State University)
    Abstract: Longitudinal micro-data derived from transaction level information about wage and vendor payments made by federal grants on multiple U.S. campuses are being developed in a partnership involving researchers, university administrators, representatives of federal agencies, and others. This paper describes the UMETRICS data initiative that has been implemented under the auspices of the Committee on Institutional Cooperation. The resulting data set reflects an emerging conceptual framework for analyzing the process, products, and impact of research. It grows from and engages the work of a diverse and vibrant community. This paper situates the UMETRICS effort in the context of research evaluation and ongoing data infrastructure efforts in order to highlight its novel and valuable features. Refocusing data construction in this field around individuals, networks, and teams offers dramatic possibilities for data linkage, the evaluation of research investments, and the development of rigorous conceptual and empirical models. Two preliminary analyses of the scientific workforce and network approaches to characterizing scientific teams ground a discussion of future directions and a call for increased community engagement.
    Keywords: UMETRICS, STAR METRICS, Science of Science Policy, linked data, scientific workforce, scientific networks
    JEL: C8 O3 J4
    Date: 2014–10
  19. By: Erika Raquel Badillo (Department of Econometrics. University of Barcelona); Rosina Moreno (Department of Econometrics. University of Barcelona)
    Abstract: This paper aims to estimate the impact of research collaboration with partners in different geographical areas on innovative performance. By using the Spanish Technological Innovation Panel, this study provides evidence that the benefits of research collaboration differ across different dimensions of the geography. We find that the impact of extra-European cooperation on innovation performance is larger than that of national and European cooperation, indicating that firms tend to benefit more from interaction with international partners as a way to access new technologies or specialized and novel knowledge that they are unable to find locally. We also find evidence of the positive role played by absorptive capacity, concluding that it implies a higher premium on the innovation returns to cooperation in the international case and mainly in the European one.
    Keywords: Innovation cooperation; Technological partners; Geographical location; Performance; Absorptive Capacity; Spanish firms JEL classification: L25; O31; O33; R1
    Date: 2014–10
  20. By: Li, Xin; Paulson, Nicholas
    Abstract: Farm management skills can affect farm managers' performance. In this article, farm management performance is analyzed based on yearly Illinois Farm Business Farm Management (FBFM) panel data across 6,760 farms from 1996 through 2011. Two out-of-sample measures of skill are used to analyze the ability of farm managers that consistently perform well over yearly and longer time horizons. Persistence tests show management skills are consistent and predictable. Results also suggest that the most skilled managers often generate better financial results.
    Keywords: skill, persistence, farm management, performance, Agribusiness, Agricultural Finance, Crop Production/Industries, Farm Management, Financial Economics, Production Economics, Q12, Q13, M11,
    Date: 2014–07
  21. By: Tirivayi J.N.; Maasen van den Brink H.; Groot W.N.J. (UNU-MERIT)
    Abstract: This paper carries out a meta regression analysis to estimate the optimal size of higher education institutions HEI and identify its implications for strategies of mergers in higher education. This study finds an optimal institutional size of 24,954 students. We find potential opportunities for merging different HEIs relative to their mean sample size public universities by nearly 190 per cent, private universities by 131 per cent, small colleges by around 952 per cent, and non-US HEIs by about 118 per cent. However, if we compare with actual sizes of top ranked universities we find that in some parts of the world top ranked universities seem to be below optimal size, while in others they appear above optimal size. We urge caution in the interpretation of the findings due to the limited data. We recommend further research and that policymakers around the world refer to their own cost structures to determine the optimal size for efficiency.
    Keywords: Analysis of Education; Educational Finance; Higher Education and Research Institutions;
    JEL: I23 I21 I22
    Date: 2014
  22. By: Mahuteau, Stéphane (NILS, Flinders University); Mavromaras, Kostas G. (NILS, Flinders University)
    Abstract: This paper examines critically the presumption that, other things equal, private schooling offers higher quality education than public schooling. We apply multilevel regression on the 2009 PISA to estimate the differential effect of public and private schooling on student scores in Australia. We control for observable and unobservable influences, at school and student levels. We find that public-private schooling quality estimated differences are not statistically significant, but Catholic schools perform better than both. Differences by sector in the level of resourcing, plays a minor role. Student socioeconomic status differences and resulting selection, drive the observed better private schooling scores outcomes.
    Keywords: PISA, government schools, school quality, multilevel modelling
    JEL: I24 I21 I28
    Date: 2014–09

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