nep-eff New Economics Papers
on Efficiency and Productivity
Issue of 2014‒12‒13
28 papers chosen by

  1. Happiness matters: the role of well-being in productivity By Charles Henri DiMaria; Chiara Peroni; Francesco Sarracino
  2. Impact of Land Ownership on Productivity and Efficiency of Rice Farmers: A Simulated Maximum Likelihood Approach By Koirala, Krishna H.; Mishra, Ashok K.; Mohanty, Samarendu
  3. Abandonment of milk production under uncertainty and inefficiency: The case of West German farms By Pieralli, Simone; Hüttel, Silke; Odening, Martin
  4. Carbon sensitive productivity, climate and institutions By Surender Kumar; Shunsuke Managi
  6. Birthplace Diversity and Productivity Spill-overs in Firms By Böheim, René; Horvath, Thomas; Mayr, Karin
  7. Product and Labor Market Regulations, Production Prices, Wages and Productivity By Gilbert Cette; Jimmy Lopez; Jacques Mairesse
  8. Appropriability mechanisms, innovation and productivity: Evidence from the UK By Hall B.H.; Sena V.
  9. Policy Distortions and Aggregate Productivity with Endogenous Establishment-Level Productivity By Jose Maria Da-Rocha; Marina Mendes Tavares; Diego Restuccia
  10. The Effects of Climate Changes on Brazilian Agricultural Production – A Multisector Growth Model Analysis By Spolador, Humberto F.S.; Smith, Rodney B.W.
  11. The Role of Fixed Cost and Non-Discretionary Variables in Fisheries: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation By Stephanie McWhinnie
  12. Relaxing credit constraints in emerging economies: The impact of public loans on the performance of Brazilian manufacturers By Ottaviano, Gianmarco I. P.; Lage de Sousa, Filipe
  13. Total factor productivity and the propagation of shocks: Empirical evidence and implications for the business cycle By Mayer, Eric; Rüth, Sebastian; Scharler, Johann
  14. Long-Term Determinants of Agricultural Output in Smallholder Farmers in Rwanda By Musafiri, Ildephonse; Mirzabaev, Alisher
  15. Identifying Expectations for Innovations in Management Practices in Dairy Sector by Using Q Methodology By Latvala, Terhi; Mandolesi, Serena; Nicholas, Phillipa; Zanoli, Raffaele
  16. Can Traction Animals Be an Alternative to Large Family Size? By Ouedraogo, Frederic B.; Brorsen, B. Wade; Kazianga, Harounan
  17. Say Pays! Shareholder Voice and Firm Performance By Cuñat, Vicente; Giné, Mireia; Guadalupe, Maria
  18. A Corn Yield Function Considering the impact of water and weather By Trindade, Federico
  19. Dealing with unobservable common trends in small samples: a panel cointegration approach By Francesca Di Iorio; Stefano Fachin
  20. The Dynamic Implication of Agricultural Research and Development Investment for Economic Development By Didier, Y. Alia; Reed, Michael R.
  21. An Economic Analysis of “Local” Production: Is it Efficient or Inefficient By Jones, Eugene
  22. Explaining Educational Attainment across Countries and over Time By Restuccia, Diego; Vandenbroucke, Guillaume
  23. Impacts of Biogas Production on the Production Factors Land and Labour – Current Effects, Possible Consequences and Further Research Needs By Emmann, Carsten H.; Guenther-Lübbers, Welf; Theuvsen, Ludwig
  24. Group Interaction in Research and the Use of General Nesting Spatial Models By Peter Burridge; J. Paul Elhorst; Katarina Zigova
  25. Managerial Practices and Students' Performance By Di Liberto, Adriana; Schivardi, Fabiano; Sulis, Giovanni
  26. The Agri-food Competitive Performance in the EU Countries: A Fifteen Years Retrospective By Carraresi, Laura; Banterle, Alessandro
  27. The development of the DDG-capability in firms: An evaluation of its impact on firm financial performance By Elisabetta Raguseo; Claudio Vitari
  28. Teacher quality and student achievement: Evidence from a Dutch sample of twins By Sander Gerritsen; Erik Plug; Dinand Webbink

  1. By: Charles Henri DiMaria; Chiara Peroni; Francesco Sarracino
    Abstract: This article is about the link between people’s subjective well-being, defined as an evaluation of one’s own life, and productivity. Our aim is to test the hypothesis that subjective well-being contributes to productivity using a two step approach: first, we establish whether subjectivewell-being can be a candidate variable to study Total Factor Productivity; second, we assess how much subjective well-being contributes to productivity at aggregate level through efficiency gains. We adopt Data Envelopment Analysis to compute total factor productivity and efficiency indices using European Social Survey and AMECO data for 20 European countries. Results show that subjective well-being is an input and not an output to production.
    Keywords: productivity, subjective well-being, TFP, efficiency gains, life satisfaction, economic growth, DEA.
    JEL: E23 I31 O47
    Date: 2014–06
  2. By: Koirala, Krishna H.; Mishra, Ashok K.; Mohanty, Samarendu
    Abstract: This paper investigates the factors affecting rice production and technical efficiency of rice farmers in Philippines. Particular attention is given to the role of land ownership. We use the 2007-2012 Loop Survey from the Institute of Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and simulated maximum likelihood (SML) approach. Results show that land ownership plays an important role in rice production. In particular, compared to owner operators, farmers who lease land are less productive. Additionally, result shows that land area, irrigation and labor cost are significant factors affecting rice production. We found mean technical efficiency score of 0.82. Finally, educated females, farmers leasing land and dry season farming tend increase technical inefficiency.
    Keywords: Simulated maximum likelihood, land ownership, technical efficiency, Philippines, rice production, Production Economics,
    Date: 2014–05–28
  3. By: Pieralli, Simone; Hüttel, Silke; Odening, Martin
    Abstract: This paper examines the impact of technical efficiency on the optimal exit timing of farms in a stochastic dynamic framework. Starting from a standard real options approach, we incorporate technical efficiency via a production function and derive an optimal price trigger at which farms irreversibly exit production. Assuming separability of efficiency on the primal technology, we show that higher efficiency and higher returns to scale make the farm more reluctant to irreversibly exit production. We extend this model to a non-separable case, test it with West German farm-level data (2000 to 2008), and find evidence that efficiency is non–separable. We find that higher volatility of milk prices and higher efficiency delay farms' exit from the market. Volatility, however, interacts with time-varying efficiency: the propensity of inefficient farms to exit the milk market attenuates under more volatile market conditions.
    Keywords: efficiency, exit, real options, dairy, Agribusiness, Farm Management, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis, Risk and Uncertainty, D20, D21,
    Date: 2014
  4. By: Surender Kumar (University of Delhi, India); Shunsuke Managi (Tohoku University)
    Abstract: Climate and institutions might be crucial in lowering the vagaries of climate change impacts in terms of productivity. This study measures the relationships of productivity measures adjusted for the regulation of carbon emission and institutions together with climate change throughout the world. This paper finds there is higher potential for reduction of CO2 emissions in developing countries at lower cost. However, the cost to reduce emissions lowers their growth potential in terms of lost productivity growth. Better institutions help to lower the negative impacts of climate change by improving the process of technological adoption in developing countries. Climate change reduces the productivity growth in developing countries by lowering the process of technological adoption, and better institutions result in higher productivity.
    Keywords: Carbon Sensitive Productivity, Climate, Institutions, Efficiency
    JEL: Q25 Q32 C61 D24 O12 P24
    Date: 2014–11
  5. By: Kibonge Naik, Aziza
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy, Environmental Economics and Policy, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2014
  6. By: Böheim, René (University of Linz); Horvath, Thomas (WIFO - Austrian Institute of Economic Research); Mayr, Karin (University of Vienna)
    Abstract: We determine workforce composition and wages in firms in the presence of productivity spill-overs between co-workers. In equilibrium, workers' wages depend on the production structure of firms, own group size, and aggregate workforce composition in the firm. We estimate the wage effects of workforce diversity and own group size by birthplace and the implied production structure in Austrian firms using a comprehensive matched employer-employee data set. In our data, we identify a positive effect of workforce diversity and a negative effect of own group size on wages, which suggest that workers of different birthplaces are complements in production on average.
    Keywords: workforce composition, productivity spill-overs, worker group size
    JEL: D21 D22 F22 J31
    Date: 2014–09
  7. By: Gilbert Cette; Jimmy Lopez; Jacques Mairesse
    Abstract: This study is to our knowledge the first attempt to infer the consequences on productivity entailed by anticompetitive regulations in product and labor markets through their impacts on production prices and wages. Results are encouraging showing that changes in production prices and wages at country*industry levels are informative about the creation of rents impeding productivity in different ways and to different extents. A simulation based on these results and on OECD regulation indicators suggests that nearly all countries, in particular European countries, could expect sizeable gains in multifactor productivity over the years from an economic policy that would be able to reform product and labor market regulation practices.
    JEL: C23 L16 L50 O43 O47
    Date: 2014–10
  8. By: Hall B.H.; Sena V. (UNU-MERIT)
    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 RD 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 firmsf 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 firmfs 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.
    Keywords: Firm Performance: Size, Diversification, and Scope; Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights: General; Intellectual Property Rights;
    JEL: O34 O30 L25
    Date: 2014
  9. By: Jose Maria Da-Rocha; Marina Mendes Tavares; Diego Restuccia
    Abstract: The large differences in income per capita across countries are mostly accounted for by differences in total factor productivity (TFP). What explains these differences in TFP across countries? Evidence suggests that the (mis)allocation of factors of production across heterogenous production units is an important factor. We study factor misallocation in a model with an endogenously determined distribution of establishment-level productivity. In this framework, policy distortions not only misallocate resources across a given set of productive units, but they also worsen the distribution of establishment-level productivity. We show that in our model, compared to the model with an exogenous distribution, the quantitative effect of policy distortions is substantially amplified. Whereas empirically-plausible policy distortions in our model generate TFP that is 14 percent that of a benchmark economy with no distortions, with an exogenous distribution the same policy distortions generate TFP that is 86 percent of the benchmark, a 6-fold amplification factor.
    Keywords: distortions, misallocation, investment, endogenous productivity, establishments.
    JEL: O1 O4
    Date: 2014–11–13
  10. By: Spolador, Humberto F.S.; Smith, Rodney B.W.
    Abstract: This paper develops a multisector growth model to examine the potential effects of climate change and Brazilian agriculture. In keeping with the current literature, the model assumes climate (here temperature and rainfall) affects agricultural output via its impact on total factor productivity (TFP). We begin by estimating an aggregate agricultural technology for Brazil, with econometric results suggesting a strong relationship exists between rainfall, temperature and agricultural TFP. We then introduce the climate effects into a dynamic multisector growth model of Brazil. Model results suggest climate change could have a negative impact on agriculture, but benefit manufacturing, with long run agricultural output per unit of labor being less than half of agricultural output per worker in a no climate change world.
    Keywords: Climate Changes, agricultural growth, multisector growth model, Environmental Economics and Policy, Productivity Analysis, O10, O11, Q1,
    Date: 2014–05
  11. 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: 2013–11
  12. By: Ottaviano, Gianmarco I. P.; Lage de Sousa, Filipe
    Abstract: Especially in developing countries credit constraints are often perceived as one of the most important market frictions constraining firm innovation and growth. Huge amounts of public money are being devoted to the removal of such constraints but their effectiveness is still subject to an intense policy debate. This paper contributes to this debate by analysing the effects of the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES) loans. It finds that, before receiving BNDES support, granted firms are indeed more credit constrained than comparable non-granted firms. It also finds that BNDES support allows granted firms to achieve the same level of performance as similar non-granted firms that are not credit constrained. However, it does not allow granted firms to outperform similar non-granted ones.
    Keywords: heterogeneous firms,productivity,public policy analysis,credit constraints
    JEL: O38 H00
    Date: 2014
  13. By: Mayer, Eric; Rüth, Sebastian; Scharler, Johann
    Abstract: Using a sign restrictions approach, we document that total factor productivity (TFP) moves counter-cyclically in the aftermath of supply and demand side shocks. To interpret our empirical results, we conduct counter-factual simulations, based on a New Keynesian DSGE model in which TFP fluctuates endogenously due to time-varying labor effort. The simulations show that the decline in the output gap, following an adverse shock, is dampened by the endogenously improving TFP as long as the nominal interest rate remains strictly positive during the downturn. If the economy hits the zero lower bound, the decline in the output gap is amplified when TFP improves endogenously.
    Keywords: TFP,labor effort,zero lower bound
    JEL: E24 E30 E32 E40
    Date: 2014
  14. By: Musafiri, Ildephonse; Mirzabaev, Alisher
    Abstract: This paper analyses the household level drivers of agricultural output in Nyabihu District, a densely populated area of rural Rwanda, over the past 26 years. We use a unique two-wave panel dataset spanning a 26-year period, linking the split-off households in 2012 to the original households in 1986. The findings identify the relative importance of labor, land, and capital for output growth in the study area. Over the studied period, the agricultural output has been characterized by decreasing elasticities of land and capital; whereas the elasticity of labor has grown three-fold. The findings also suggest a substantial impact of mobile phone technology adoption by farm households. Using propensity score matching, we find that agricultural output for mobile phone users is at least 38 percent higher than non-users.
    Keywords: long-term determinants, Cobb-Douglas function, agricultural output, ICT adoption, smallholder farmers, Rwanda, Africa, Agricultural and Food Policy, Community/Rural/Urban Development, Food Security and Poverty, Land Economics/Use, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2014–05
  15. By: Latvala, Terhi; Mandolesi, Serena; Nicholas, Phillipa; Zanoli, Raffaele
    Abstract: In this paper, expectations along the Finnish dairy supply chain for innovation to achieve more sustainable farming systems are identified. Four focus group discussions and three interviews for low input and organic dairy supply chain members were performed. The Q Methodology was used to highlight common ground and divergence in the expectations that organic and low input dairying can deliver. The common view is that innovation in housing aimed at improving animal welfare should be fostered. Animal welfare innovations were highlighted especially by the consumer group. Other supply chain members encouraged in accordance with consumer group animal welfare, but also innovations linking with the efficiency of production and feed quality. Common understanding between actors is that innovations linking to genetic modification are not acceptable. Many respondents also considered unnaturally those innovations that were linking with acceleration of genetic selection, speeding up calf development, and supporting in 100 % indoor dairy systems.
    Keywords: organic, low input, milk, dairy, Q method, innovation, sustainability, Agribusiness, Farm Management, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods,
    Date: 2013–09
  16. By: Ouedraogo, Frederic B.; Brorsen, B. Wade; Kazianga, Harounan
    Abstract: Large families in rural areas causes pressure on natural resources, an upsurge of inter-community conflicts. Anecdotal evidence suggests that one reason for large families is the value of children as a source of labor.This research determines the marginal change in household productivity with respect to traction animals and the number of young people in the household.
    Keywords: Traction animals, household production, family size, Food Security and Poverty, International Development, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2014
  17. By: Cuñat, Vicente (London School of Economics); Giné, Mireia (Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania); Guadalupe, Maria (INSEAD)
    Abstract: This paper estimates the effects of Say-on-Pay (SoP); a policy that increases shareholder "voice" by providing shareholders with a regular vote on executive pay. We apply a regression discontinuity design to the votes on shareholder-sponsored SoP proposals. Adopting SoP leads to large increases in market value (4%) and to improvements in long-term performance: profitability and labor productivity increase, while overheads and investment fall. In contrast, we find limited effects on pay levels and structure. This suggests that SoP serves as a regular vote of confidence on the CEO, which leads to higher efficiency and market value.
    Keywords: say-on-pay, corporate governance, executive compensation
    JEL: G34 M52
    Date: 2014–10
  18. By: Trindade, Federico
    Abstract: Agriculture is a resource-intensive activity. It currently uses a substantial portion of the Earth’s natural resources: crop production, pasture and livestock grazing systems occupy around 40% of total land area, nitrogen fertilizer applied to agricultural land comprises more than half of the global reactive nitrogen attributable to human activity and agricultural production consumes more fresh water than any other human activity since it accounts for 80% of all freshwater consumption (Cassman 2003). Water is one of the key determinants of agricultural land productivity, adequate water supply to crops is essential to achieve maximum yield and greater stability, enabling also greater scope for diversification. The success of irrigation in improving food security and fostering rural welfare during the last decades has been extremely important but an inappropriate management of it can contribute to a series of environmental problems. The achievement of the required sustained (and sustainable) growth in agricultural production over the next 40 years calls for understanding the current and future enhancers and constraints of agricultural productivity. As water becomes scarcer it is important to estimate the real contribution that water has for agricultural productivity given the whole set of variables that are present in the farming production process, including also the amount of fertilizer and chemicals used, the environment where the process is held (such as temperature, precipitation and soil organic matter) and the farmers profit maximizing behavior. The objective of this study is to measure the contribution that the amount of water irrigated has on agricultural productivity in addition to the effect of weather and the traditional inputs. The data set used in this study consists on data from a survey done to farmers in three different Natural Resources Districts (NRDs) in the state of Nebraska during the period 2004 to 2011. The chosen NRDs are spread over the 41st parallel along East, Center and West Nebraska accounting for important weather (temperatures and precipitation) and soil variability. The data set consists of more than 30,000 observations with information on actual yield, type of crop, inches of water employed, nitrogen applied and manure rates. Additionally we include estimations on temperature (measured in intervals of degree days), precipitation and soil organic matter. Using these variables, this research develops an econometric production function that assumes a semi transcendental logarithmic technology. Particular interest is given to the amount of water used and its interactions with the remaining variables. We do not know of any other similar study done at this level of aggregation and with this great amount of observations. The hypothesized production function follows the form: Where for each field Yi represents the log of the biomass produced at year t for all the crops, Xit is a vector of the log of the amount of water used, amount of fertilizer used, amount of manure used and the time trend at year t, Kit is soil organic matter for year t and rit is a vector of rainfall an 2 degree days intervals (dd30-35 and dd35-40) for year t. By estimating the production elasticities from this translog specification we are able to obtain the effect of water and the other inputs in our hypothesized biomass yield function at each data point. Initial results quantify the critical importance that the amount of irrigated water has on agricultural productivity. As expected the amount of water used has a positive effect on the expected yield, for every extra inch of water pumped the yield is expected to increase by 6.74 percent. Results also highlight the significant negative effect of higher temperatures, a full day of temperatures over 35ºC is expected to decrease the yield in 33.1 percent but this harmful negative effect can be decreased by the use of irrigation. Results also highlight and quantify the importance of the use of Nitrogen as fertilizer. As a next step in this analysis, we plan to use the already available information on nitrogen and electricity prices to improve our estimation; by incorporating share equations we will be able to account for the economic behavior of the producer (as well as the physical relations between the inputs) and additionally to study the effect that price changes due to market or policy modifications can have on factor allocation (in the short run) or in technical change (induced by price changes in the long run).
    Keywords: Agricultural productivity water irrigation weather climate, Environmental Economics and Policy, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy,
    Date: 2014
  19. By: Francesca Di Iorio (Universita' di Napoli Federico II); Stefano Fachin (Universita' di Roma "La Sapienza")
    Abstract: Non stationary panel models allowing for unobservable common trends have recently become very popular. However, standard methods, which are based on factor extraction or models augmented with cross-section averages, require large sample sizes, not always available in practice. In these cases we propose the simple and robust alternative of augmenting the panel regres- sion with common time dummies. The underlying assumption of additive e¤ects can be tested by means of a panel cointegration test, with no need of estimating a general interactive e¤ects model. An application to modelling labour productivity growth in the four major European economies (France, Germany, Italy and UK) illustrates the method.
    Keywords: Common trends, Panel cointegration, TFP.
    JEL: C23 C15 E2
    Date: 2014–11
  20. By: Didier, Y. Alia; Reed, Michael R.
    Abstract: This paper presents some evidence of a positive effect of Agriculture R&D investment on economic growth in general dynamic setting using annual data for 57 developing countries for the period 1981-2010. The potential endogeneity of Research and Development Investment is also addressed to identify causal effect using GMM Style internal instrument that successfully pass various validity tests. Our analysis separates the growth effect and the level effect of R&D investment. The result appears to be robust to various proxies for Agriculture R&D investment. The finding suggests the intensification of investment in research and development in developing countries to boost agricultural productivity and economic growth.
    Keywords: Research and Development, Agriculture, Economic Growth, International Development, Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies,
    Date: 2014–05
  21. By: Jones, Eugene
    Abstract: It is well recognized that the production of many farm commodities, especially fruits and vegetables, has become geographically concentrated, with larger but fewer farmers involved in production. This concentration, according to critics, has resulted in the production of less flavorful commodities and added unnecessary costs to marketing. To address these shortcomings, several groups have advocated “local” production of farm commodities, especially fruits and vegetables. According to proponents of “locals”, such production is preferred by consumers because these commodities are fresher, more nutritious, better tasting, and grown with fewer pesticides. Further, local commodities provide income opportunities for small farmers and they serve to lower food miles and transportation costs. While acknowledging these described attributes and benefits, this paper uses a specific commodity, potatoes, to illustrate the true costs of “locals”. Results show efficiency gains from comparative advantage and other factors that far exceed the most optimistic returns to “locals”. In dollars, “local” production of potatoes would add, as a minimum, $3.8 billion of additional cost. Further, it would require an additional 961,000 acres of land. Local production costs for all commodities that make up consumers’ diets could possibly rival that of the $90 billion food stamp budget.
    Keywords: Inefficiency, Local, Potatoes, Production Efficiency, Technical Efficiency, Marketing Efficiency, Pricing Efficency, Agribusiness, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Production Economics,
    Date: 2014
  22. By: Restuccia, Diego (University of Toronto); Vandenbroucke, Guillaume (Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis)
    Abstract: Consider the following facts. In 1950, the richest countries attained an average of 8 years of schooling whereas the poorest countries 1.3 years, a large 6-fold difference. By 2005, the difference in schooling declined to 2-fold because schooling increased faster in poor than in rich countries. What explains educational attainment differences across countries and their evolution over time? We consider an otherwise standard model of schooling featuring non- homothetic preferences and a labor supply margin to assess the quantitative contribution of productivity and life expectancy in explaining educational attainment. A calibrated version of the model accounts for 90 percent of the difference in schooling levels in 1950 between rich and poor countries and 71 percent of the faster increase in schooling over time in poor relative to rich countries. These results suggest an alternative view of the determinants of low education in developing countries that is based on low productivity.
    Keywords: Schooling; productivity; life expectancy; labor supply.
    JEL: E24 J22 J24 O1 O4
    Date: 2014–11–01
  23. By: Emmann, Carsten H.; Guenther-Lübbers, Welf; Theuvsen, Ludwig
    Abstract: tion from agricultural sources. However, many other EU member states are creating the necessary conditions for rapid growth in this area. The German Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG), which sets payments over a long time period for electricity supplied from renewa-ble sources, often serves as a benchmark. However, the continuing biogas boom has also led to criticism of the EEG in Germany. Opponents of biogas production point to the rising cost of leasing land, changes in the agricultural structure due to maize monoculture, increased competition with other agricultural branches (e.g., livestock husbandry) and the crowding out of classical food production. This paper examines the validity of these points of criticism. To this end, a written survey (n = 246) of farmers in six selected rural districts in the German state of Lower Saxony was carried out in 2010 and 2011. OLS regressions conducted on the data from these farmers showed that biogas production has led to a substantial increase in land lease prices for cropland. Furthermore, approximately 20% of the respondents report complete crowding out of established agricultural production forms, resulting in a decrease in the resource basis for downstream animal and plant processing industries. The results also indicate that, in extreme cases, such crowding out might even reduce the availability of em-ployment in rural areas. In closing, the paper highlights further research needs in order to provide comprehensive information (for every German state, the entire country of Germany and other EU member states) regarding the effects of biogas production on net employ-ment, infrastructure and added value.
    Keywords: biogas production, Lower Saxony, land lease prices, crowding-out effects, Agribusiness, Farm Management, Industrial Organization, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods,
    Date: 2013–09
  24. By: Peter Burridge (Department of Economics and Related Studies, University of York, UK); J. Paul Elhorst (Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Groningen, The Netherlands); Katarina Zigova (Department of Economics, University of Konstanz, Germany)
    Abstract: This paper tests the feasibility and empirical implications of a spatial econometric model with a full set of interaction effects and weight matrix defined as an equally weighted group interaction matrix applied to research productivity of individuals. We also elaborate two extensions of this model, namely with group fixed effects and with heteroskedasticity. In our setting the model with a full set of interaction effects is overparameterised: only the SDM and SDEM specifications produce acceptable results. They imply comparable spillover effects, but by applying a Bayesian approach taken from LeSage (2014), we are able to show that the SDEM specification is more appropriate and thus that colleague interaction effects work through observed and unobserved exogenous characteristics common to researchers within a group.
    Keywords: Spatial econometrics, identifcation, heteroskedasticity, group fixed effects, interaction effects, research productivity
    JEL: C21 D8 I23 J24
    Date: 2014–09–17
  25. By: Di Liberto, Adriana (University of Cagliari); Schivardi, Fabiano (Bocconi University); Sulis, Giovanni (University of Cagliari)
    Abstract: We study the effects of managerial practices in schools on students' outcomes. We measure managerial practices using the World Management Survey, a methodology that enables us to construct robust measures of management quality comparable across countries. We find substantial heterogeneity in managerial practices across six industrialized countries, with more centralized systems (Italy and Germany) lagging behind the more autonomous ones (Canada, Sweden, the UK, the US). For Italy, we are able to match organizational practices at the school level with students' outcomes in a math standardized test. We find that managerial practices are positively related to students' outcomes. The estimates imply that if Italy had the same managerial practices as the UK (the best performer), it would close the gap in the math OECD-PISA test with respect to the OECD average. We argue that our results are robust to selection issues and show that they are confirmed by a set of IV estimates and by a large number of robustness checks. Overall, our results suggest that policies directed at improving students' cognitive achievements should take into account principals' selection and training in terms of managerial capabilities.
    Keywords: management, productivity, school principals, cognitive skills
    JEL: L2 I2 M1 O32
    Date: 2014–09
  26. By: Carraresi, Laura; Banterle, Alessandro
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the competitive performance of different European countries at sector level in the intra-EU market from 1995 to 2011, comparing food industry and agricultural sector. In particular, we aim to assess the effect of the EU enlargement (first period) and the economic crisis (second period) on the competitiveness of EU countries. The data come from the Eurostat database of international trade. The competitive performance of EU countries is measured through several trade indices, such as Export and Import Market Share, Revealed Comparative Advantage, Net Export Index, and Vollrath indices, analysing their values over the last fifteen years. Our analysis showed that, in the EU countries, agriculture and food industry do not reveal strong differences in competitive performance during the last fifteen years. Among big countries, France and Spain showed a continuous worsening competitive performance. A similar trend is found for Belgium. On the contrary, the Netherlands revealed the best performance, both in agriculture and in food industry, together with Italy. Nevertheless, the Netherlands has lightly lost specialisation because of a rise of total exports that have affected the value of RCA. Italy is characterised by a smaller increase, especially in the food sector. The only country showing a significant difference in competitive trends between agriculture and food industry is Germany. It became leader in the food industry of EU, with a growing performance over the period analysed, while it is not competitive nor specialised in agriculture. Among small countries, it is worth to highlight the performance of Austria.
    Keywords: competitive performance, agriculture, food industry, EU enlargement, global economic crisis, Agribusiness, Agricultural and Food Policy, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Q17, F1, L66,
    Date: 2013–09
  27. By: Elisabetta Raguseo (Polito - Politecnico di Torino [Torino] - Politecnico di Torino); Claudio Vitari (MTS - Management Technologique et Strategique - Grenoble École de Management (GEM))
    Abstract: We examine whether firms that develop the Digital Data Genesis dynamic capability show higher performance. Using detailed survey data on the capabilities developed by companies by the usage of digital data and firm financial performance of 96 firms, we find that the firms that develop the DDG dynamic capability have levels of ROA, ROS and revenue growth higher than others do. Our results provide one of the first empirical evidence on the direct link between DDG dynamic capability and firm financial performance
    Keywords: Digital Data Genesis; dynamic capabilities; Firm financial performance
    Date: 2013
  28. By: Sander Gerritsen; Erik Plug; Dinand Webbink
    Abstract: This paper examines the causal link that runs from classroom quality to student achievement using data on twin pairs who entered the same school but were allocated to different classrooms in an exogenous way. In particular, we apply twin fixed-effects estimation to assess the effect of teacher quality on student test scores from second through eighth grade, arguing that a change in teacher quality is probably the most important classroom intervention within a twin context. In a series of estimations using measurable teacher characteristics, we find that: (a) the test performance of all students improve with teacher experience; (b) teacher experience also matters for student performance after the initial years in the profession; (c) the teacher experience effect is most prominent in earlier grades; (d) the teacher experience effects are robust to the inclusion of other classroom quality measures, such as peer group composition and class size; and (e) an increase in teacher experience also matters for career stages with less labor-market mobility which suggests positive returns to on the job training of teachers.
    JEL: I2 J4
    Date: 2014–11

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