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Measuring Productivity of Research in Economics. A Cross-Country Study Using DEA

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  • Martin G. Kocher

    ()
    (University of Innsbruck)

  • Mikulas Luptacik

    ()
    (Department of Economics, Vienna University of Economics & B.A.)

  • Matthias Sutter

    ()
    (University of Innsbruck)

Abstract

Using a sample of 21 OECD-countries we measure productivity in top-edge economic research by using data envelopment analysis (DEA). DEA is a tool for evaluating relative efficiency and is widely used when there are multiple inputs and outputs and one lacks a specific functional form of a production function. The publications in 10 economics journals with the highest average impact factor over the time period 1980-1998 are taken as research output. Inputs are measured by R&D expenditures, number of universities with economics departments and (as uncontrolled variable) total population. Under constant returns-to-scale the USA are in dominant position with remarkable distance to other countries. Under variable returns-to-scale the efficiency frontier is created by the USA with most productive scale size (MPSS), and by Ireland and New Zealand, which are technical efficient but scale inefficient. All countries - except the USA - display increasing returns-to-scale, which shows that they have a possibility to improve their efficiency by scaling up their research activities.

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Paper provided by Vienna University of Economics, Department of Economics in its series Department of Economics Working Papers with number wuwp077.

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Date of creation: Aug 2001
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Handle: RePEc:wiw:wiwwuw:wuwp077

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Keywords: research in economics; productivity analysis; cross-country study; data envelopment analysis (DEA);

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  1. Michael E. Conroy & Richard Dusansky, 1995. "The Productivity of Economics Departments in the U.S.: Publications in the Core Journals," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(4), pages 1966-1971, December.
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  14. Kocher, Martin G & Sutter, Matthias, 2001. "The Institutional Concentration of Authors in Top Journals of Economics during the Last Two Decades," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(472), pages F405-21, June.
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