nep-eff New Economics Papers
on Efficiency and Productivity
Issue of 2020‒09‒21
twenty papers chosen by

  1. Productivity, Markups, and Trade: Evidence from Mexican Manufacturing Industries By Puggioni Daniela
  2. Measuring productivity: theory and British practice By Oulton, Nicholas
  3. Malmquist Productivity Indices and Plant Capacity Utilisation: New Proposals and Empirical Application By Kristiaan KERSTENS; Jafar SADEGHI; Ignace VAN DE WOESTYNE; Linjia ZHANG
  4. Evaluation of the Fruit Tree Productivity Project in Morocco: Final Report on Irrigation Activities By Evan Borkum; Anitha Sivasankaran; Elena Moroz; Matt Sloan
  5. Technical efficiency differentials in rice production technologies in Nigeria By Olorunfemi O. Ogundele.; Victor O. Okoruwa
  6. Trade reform and efficiency in Cameroon's manufacturing industries By Ousmanou Njikam
  7. Firm efficiency, foreign ownership and CEO gender in corrupt environments By Hanousek, Jan; Shamshur, Anastasiya; Tresl, Jiri
  8. Is innovation in ICT valuable for the efficiency of Italian museums? By Calogero Guccio; Marco Ferdinando Martorana; Isidoro Mazza; Giacomo Pignataro; Ilde Rizzo
  9. Total factor productivity inKenya: The links with trade policy By Joseph O. Onjala
  10. The role of hired labor in transient and persistent technical efficiency on Irish dairy farms By Garcia, Luis; Laepple, Doris; Dillon, Emma; Thorne, Fiona
  11. Analyzing the Tradeoff between the Economic and Environmental Performance: the Case of Chinese Manufacturing Sector By Zhiyang SHEN; Michael VARDANYAN; Tomas BALEZENTIS; Jianlin WANG
  12. Structural Change, Investment Efficiency and Productivity Growth in the Indian Food Processing Industry By M L, Nithyashree; Pal, Suresh; Singh, Alka; Girish Kumar, Jha
  13. Multi-dimensional model for measurement of the motivation level and its relationship with organizational performance By Stefanescu, Silviu Cristian
  14. The role of innovation in industrial dynamics and productivity growth: a survey of the literature By Ugur, Mehment; Vivarelli, Marco
  15. Technical Efficiency of Water Boards in South Africa: A Costing and Pricing Benchmarking Exercise By Ngobeni, Victor; Breitenbach, Marthinus C
  16. The impact of new production technology on employee productivity in the South African workplace By Gerhardus van Zyl
  17. Adopting African Indigenous Vegetables: A Dynamic Panel Analysis of Smallholder Farmers in Kenya By Vivas, Jonathan; Takagi, Chifumi; Kirimi, Lilian; Kim, Man-Keun
  18. In Times of Trouble: Innovative Drivers of External Competitiveness for Small Businesses during the Great Recession By Brancati, Emanuele; Brancati, Raffaele; Guarascio, Dario; Zanfei, Antonello
  19. Robotic Harvesters or Migrant Workers? A Mechanization Adoption Model By Luo, Tianyuan; Li, Sheng; Wu, Feng; Guan, Zhengfei
  20. Layoffs and Productivity at a Bangladeshi Sweater Factory By Robert Akerlof; Anik Ashraf; Rocco Macchiavello; Atonu Rabbani

  1. By: Puggioni Daniela
    Abstract: This paper applies a structural framework to estimate production function coefficients, obtain firm-level markup estimates, and evaluate the impact of the trade liberalization that took place in Mexico in the period 1984-1990 on the profitability of the firms operating in the domestic market and exporters. Quantitatively, the results show no evidence of substantial productivity growth, but some evidence of trade discipline on the price-cost margins. A markup premium is however identified for intensive exporters. Qualitatively, these results suggest that the effectiveness of trade policies crucially depends on adequately implementing complementary reforms aimed at improving the competitiveness and the efficiency in the allocation of resources in the internal market.
    Keywords: Production function estimation;Productivity;Markups;Trade liberalization;Mexican manufacturing industries
    JEL: D22 D24 F14 L11 L60
    Date: 2019–09
  2. By: Oulton, Nicholas
    Abstract: This paper lays out the basic theory behind productivity measurement, whether at the level of the country, region, industry or firm. The theory is illustrated using recent data from UK official publications. Productivity growth over time and differences in productivity levels between countries or regions at a point in time are both covered. Labour productivity and multi-factor productivity (MFP) are discussed. In the case of MFP special attention is paid to the measurement of capital inputs. Wherever possible, an accompanying spreadsheet supplies data from recent publications by the United Kingdom’s Office for National Statistics so that readers can reproduce official estimates or even employ alternative assumptions to produce their own estimates. Limitations in the underlying theory are highlighted as are empirical difficulties in implementing the theory.
    Keywords: productivity; measurement; MFP; capital; labour
    JEL: E23 E22 E24 O47
    Date: 2020–01–01
  3. By: Kristiaan KERSTENS (IESEG School of Management and LEM-UMR 9221); Jafar SADEGHI (IESEG School of Management and Ivey Business School); Ignace VAN DE WOESTYNE (KU Leuven, Research Unit MEES); Linjia ZHANG (International Business School Suzhou, Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University)
    Abstract: The purpose of this contribution is to compute the popular Malmquist productivity index while adding a component representing plant capacity utilisation. In particu- lar, this is –to the best of our knowledge– the ?rst empirical application estimating both input- and output-oriented Malmquist productivity indices in conjunction with the corresponding input- and output-oriented plant capacity utilisation measures. Our empirical application focuses on a provincial data set of tourism activities in China over the period 2008 to 2016.
    Keywords: : DataGEnvelopmentGAnalysis;GFreeGDisposalGHull;GMalmquistGProductivityGIndex;GDecomposition;GPlantGCapacity
    JEL: C61
    Date: 2020–06
  4. By: Evan Borkum; Anitha Sivasankaran; Elena Moroz; Matt Sloan
    Abstract: In this report we describe the final findings from the performance evaluation of the investments in irrigated olive and date areas funded by MCC’s Fruit Tree Productivity Project in Morocco.
    Keywords: Morocco, Agriculture, Irrigation
  5. By: Olorunfemi O. Ogundele.; Victor O. Okoruwa (Nigerian Institute of Social and Economic Research)
    Abstract: This study examined technical efficiency differentials between farmers planting traditional rice varieties and those planting improved varieties in Nigeria. The study used a multistage random sampling procedure for the selection of 302 respondents comprising 160 traditional rice varieties and 142 improved rice varieties farmers across four major rice producing states in the country. The analytical techniques involved descriptive statistics and estimation of technical efficiency following maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) procedure available in Frontier 4.1. The various tests of statistics carried out included the T-test for equality of means for input use, socio-economic characteristics and technical efficiency between the two groups of farmers, and the Levene test for equality of variances. Results from these analyses showed that significant increase recorded in output ofrice in the country could be traced mainly to area expansion. The use of some critical inputs such as fertilizer and herbicides by the farmers were found to be below recommended quantity per hectare. There was also significant difference in the use of such input as labour between the two groups of farmers. Other variables that tend to contribute to technical efficiency are hired labour, herbicides and seeds. Fertilizer, the most critical input required for increased production, was found not to have contributed significantly to technical efficiency. The estimated average technical efficiencies for the two groups were correspondingly high (>0.90), which indicated that there is little opportunity for increased efficiency given the present state of technology. The test of hypothesis on the differentials in technical efficiency between the two groups of farmers showed that there was no absolute differential. The lack of differential in technical efficiency between the two groups puts to question the much expected impact of the decades of rice development programmes in Nigeria. This study therefore recommendes that all forms of obstacles that could constrain the use of inputs should be removed. This should include complete liberalization of the procurement and distribution of such input and the development of some low-cost labour saving technologies to ease labour constraints on farms.
  6. By: Ousmanou Njikam (University of Yaounde II, Cameroun)
    Abstract: Does trade reform generate gains in manufacturing firm-level technical efficiency? Pooling of pre and post trade reform data for Cameroon, and estimating a single stochastic production frontier for each industrial sector, yielded empirical results showing that the average technical efficiency increased in six of eight sectors following trade reform. The post trade reform firm-level technical efficiencies increased on average at an annual rate of 1.39%, while prior to trade reform they decreased on average at the annual rate of 0.76%. Before trade reform, the restricted trade regime coupled with macroeconomic and political instability negatively affected firm-level technical efficiency. Post trade reform potential determinants of firms’ technical efficiency include export share and import penetration rate.
  7. By: Hanousek, Jan; Shamshur, Anastasiya; Tresl, Jiri
    Abstract: We study the effects of corruption on firm efficiency using a unique dataset of private firms from 14 Central and Eastern European countries from 2000 to 2013. We find that an environment characterized by a high level of corruption has an adverse effect on firm efficiency. This effect is stronger for firms with a lower propensity to behave corruptly, such as foreign-controlled firms and firms managed by female CEOs, while local firms and firms with male CEOs are not disadvantaged. We also find that an environment characterized by considerable heterogeneity in the perception of corruption is associated with an increase in firm efficiency. This effect is particularly strong for foreign-controlled firms from low corruption countries, while no effect is observed for firms managed by a female CEO.
    Keywords: Efficiency; Corruption; Ownership structure; Foreign ownership; CEO gender; Firms; Panel data; Stochastic frontier; Europe
    JEL: C33 D24 G32 L60 L80 M21
    Date: 2019–12
  8. By: Calogero Guccio (Università di Catania); Marco Ferdinando Martorana (Università di Catania); Isidoro Mazza (Università di Catania); Giacomo Pignataro (Università di Catania e Politecnico di Milano); Ilde Rizzo (Università di Catania)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the influence of information and communication technologies (ICT) on the efficiency in attracting visitors of Italian museums. Notwithstanding the extensive literature on museum performance measurement, the analysis of the role of technological innovation is relatively neglected. As a first attempt to fill this lacuna, this study presents a two-stage analysis of a novel sample of Italian state-owned museums built by merging information drawn from different sources. In the first stage, we use Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) and bootstrapping technique to measure the efficiency of museums. In the second stage, we use a bootstrap truncated regression approach to test the extent to which different forms of ICT affect museum efficiency. We distinguish the ICT investments into in situ and online services, since the former improve the visitors’ experience on site, while the latter can prepare for the visit or, even, be a substitute of the visit. The results reveal that the use of ICT is generally associated with better performances but in situ services shows to play a major role.
    Keywords: museums; ICT, technological innovation, efficiency, Data Envelopment Analysis, bootstrap truncated regression
    JEL: C14 C61 I21 Z1
    Date: 2020–09
  9. By: Joseph O. Onjala (Institute for Development Studies, University of Nairobi)
    Abstract: As an objective of development policy, productivity growth has been difficult to achievein many countries. For this reason, studies on sources of growth are a field of greatimportance to policy makers. Recent experience, particularly for East Asian countries,has highlighted the potential for achieving rapid and renewed growth in sub-SaharanAfrica through appropriate trade policy orientation. In Kenya, however, where the lastthree decades have seen attempts to foster growth through shifts in trade policy orientation,convincing evidence on the linkage between trade strategies and productivity growth isstill lacking.This study explores productivity sources in the manufacturing and agriculturalsectors using aggregated data over 1960–1995. Productivity is explained by: growth byfactor inputs, and change in total factor productivity. Agriculture is seen as a dynamicsector producing important linkages with the growth of other sectors. The manufacturingsector, on the other hand, is important in growth-oriented analysis, which generallyperceives it as crucial for increasing the rate of growth for the whole economy. The studyestablishes the direction of the links between TFP change in these sectors with tradepolicy episodes such as imports, export penetration and trade volume.Nevertheless, the impact of trade policy on productivity remains inconclusive.Evidence suggests that more robust results with broader policy consensus could be obtainedif the analysis were extended to a disaggregated level for each of the sectors
  10. By: Garcia, Luis; Laepple, Doris; Dillon, Emma; Thorne, Fiona
    Keywords: Productivity Analysis, Labor and Human Capital, Production Economics
    Date: 2020–07
  11. By: Zhiyang SHEN (Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, China); Michael VARDANYAN (IESEG School of Management, Lille, France); Tomas BALEZENTIS (Lithuanian Institute of Agrarian Economics, Vilnius, Lithuania); Jianlin WANG (Dongbei University of Finance and Economics, Dalian, China)
    Abstract: The so-called by-production approach, introduced by Murty and Russell (2002) and Murty et al. (2012), has provided researchers with an improved methodology for approximating polluting production technologies. However, since the original by-production model does not impose any relationship between its economic and environmental sub-technologies, it is not capable of addressing the potential tradeoff between the economic and environmental performance. Although this link has been recently proposed in the extensions to the original by-production approach, the tradeoff framework remains ambiguous with respect to the weights to be assigned to the economic and environmental sub-objectives. This paper proposes a novel approach for estimating the green productivity growth in the Chinese manufacturing sector based on the scenario analysis simulating policy preferences. Our model allows us to measure the tradeoff between faster economic growth and better environmental protection, providing policy-makers with insights on how to steer the Chinese industry towards a more environmentally friendly development path in the future.
    Keywords: : Tradeoff analysis; By-production technology; Carbon emissions; Green productivity; Chinese manufacturing.
    JEL: O47 Q5 O2
    Date: 2020–06
  12. By: M L, Nithyashree; Pal, Suresh; Singh, Alka; Girish Kumar, Jha
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy, Marketing, Productivity Analysis
    Date: 2020–07
  13. By: Stefanescu, Silviu Cristian
    Abstract: Motivation is an essential ingredient in ensuring employee performance and productivity. Even when employees have the right skills, clear work goals are formulated and there is a favorable work environment, they would not do their job without an intense motivation to achieve these goals. Motivated employees are excited to exert a certain level of effort (intensity), for a certain period of time (persistence), towards a distinct goal or direction. Motivation is essential for any discussion of employee behavior within the organization, as it has a direct link to individual and collective performance; it is assumed that the motivated worker is the productive worker. Not everyone is motivated by the same rewards, and managers need to think about adapting the motivational environment to the individual, depending on the organization's policies. In this paper we propose a multi-dimensional model for measuring the degree of motivation and its relationship with organizational performance.
    Keywords: performance; motivation; multi-dimensional model
    JEL: M12 M21
    Date: 2019–05
  14. By: Ugur, Mehment; Vivarelli, Marco
    Abstract: We review the theoretical underpinnings and the empirical findings of the literature that investigates the effects of innovation on firm survival and firm productivity, which constitute the two main channels through which innovation drives growth. We aim to contribute to the ongoing debate along three paths. First, we discuss the extent to which the theoretical perspectives that inform the empirical models allow for heterogeneity in the effects of R&D/innovation on firm survival and productivity. Secondly, we draw attention to recent modeling and estimation effort that reveals novel sources of heterogeneity, non-linearity and volatility in the gains from R&D/innovation, particularly in terms of its effects on firm survival and productivity. Our third contribution is to link our findings with those from prior reviews to demonstrate how the state of the art is evolving and with what implications for future research.
    Keywords: Innovation,R&D,Survival,Productivity
    JEL: O30 O33
    Date: 2020
  15. By: Ngobeni, Victor; Breitenbach, Marthinus C
    Abstract: South Africa is a water-scarce country with deteriorating water resources quality, security, infrastructure investment and management. 89 per cent of households have access to water supply, but, only 64 per cent or 10.3 million households are estimated to have reliable water supply. The water sector in South Africa is cost-intensive with various monopolistic utilities. The sector is faced with weakening financial viability due to: inefficient operations coupled with inadequate investment, financing and under-pricing. As a result, cost recovery is not being achieved. In this paper, we use DEA to analyse the technical efficiency of the 9 water boards. We achieve this objective by using expenditure, water losses, sales volumes, and tariffs to model the industry’s efficiency frontiers. The study finds the mean technical efficiency scores of 73.2, 83.7, 85.8 and 92.3 per cent, in the four models respectively. The study also determined the average bulk water tariffs that should be charged in the sector, thereby establishing the basis for economic regulation.
    Keywords: Water Boards, Data Envelopment Analysis, Technical Efficiency, Tariffs
    JEL: C6 C65 D2 H3
    Date: 2020–07–03
  16. By: Gerhardus van Zyl (College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg)
    Date: 2020
  17. By: Vivas, Jonathan; Takagi, Chifumi; Kirimi, Lilian; Kim, Man-Keun
    Keywords: Productivity Analysis, Agricultural and Food Policy, Agricultural Finance
    Date: 2020–07
  18. By: Brancati, Emanuele; Brancati, Raffaele; Guarascio, Dario; Zanfei, Antonello
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the main drivers of external competitiveness in times of crisis for small and medium enterprises (SMEs). We focus on the Italian experience in the midst of the financial and sovereign-debt crisis, and present robust evidence based on a comprehensive survey of Italian companies in the manufacturing and production service sectors (the MET dataset). Overall, our results confirm the high degree of heterogeneity of the Italian system and the differences between internationalized and domestic companies in terms of performance as well as structural and behavioral dimensions. In particular, data highlight not only the strict correlation between internationalization and innovative activities but also a positive change of attitude of Italian firms towards these strategies. Our analysis shows that, whilst structural factors play a key role for external competitiveness, other critical firm-level aspects trigger superior performances, especially strategic profiles, technological capabilities, and proactive behaviors such as innovativeness and R&D investment. Importantly, we document disproportionate effects of innovation for smaller and less productive companies. This points at dynamic strategies as a potential tool to fill the gap between larger/more productive companies and the set of less structured firms, a segment representing an ideal target for policy measures.
    Keywords: SME,external competitiveness,Great Recession
    JEL: M20 L23 L25
    Date: 2020
  19. By: Luo, Tianyuan; Li, Sheng; Wu, Feng; Guan, Zhengfei
    Keywords: Production Economics, Productivity Analysis, Agricultural Finance
    Date: 2020–07
  20. By: Robert Akerlof; Anik Ashraf; Rocco Macchiavello; Atonu Rabbani
    Abstract: Conflicts between management and workers are common and can have significant impacts on productivity. We study how workers in a large Bangladeshi sweater factory responded to management’s decision to lay off about a quarter of the workers following a period of labor unrest. Our main finding is that the mass layoff resulted in a large and persistent reduction in the productivity of surviving workers. Moreover, it is specifically the firing of peers with whom workers had social connections – friends - that matters. We also provide suggestive evidence of deliberate shading of performance by workers in order to punish the factory’s management, and a corresponding deliberate attempt by the factory to win the angry workers back by selectively giving them tasks that are more rewarding. By combining ethnographic and survey data on the socialization process with the factory’s internal records, the paper provides a rare glimpse into the aftermath of an episode of labor unrest. A portrait of the firm emerges as a web of interconnected relational agreements supported by social connections.
    Keywords: layoffs, productivity, morale, relational contracts
    JEL: J50 M50 O12
    Date: 2020

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