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On the determinants of local government performance: A two-stage nonparametric approach

  • Balaguer-Coll, Maria Teresa
  • Prior, Diego
  • Tortosa-Ausina, Emili

This article analyzes the efficiency of Comunitat Valenciana (Spain) local governments and their main explanatory variables. The analysis is performed in two stages. Firstly, efficiency is measured via (nonparametric) activity analysis techniques. The measurement techniques also enable the sources of inefficiency to be identified, i.e., whether inefficiencies are primarily overall cost, technical, or allocative. The second stage identifies some critical determinants of efficiency, focusing both on political and fiscal policy variables. In contrast to previous two-stage research studies, our approach performs the latter attempt via nonparametric smoothing techniques, rather that econometric methods ?such as OLS or Tobit related. Results show that inefficiencies are largely attributable to allocative factors, resulting in a notable gap between cost and technical efficiency. Inefficiencies are also larger for small municipalities. However, they are not exclusively attributable to poor management, as second-stage analysis reveals both fiscal and policy variables, either within or outside local governments control, to be explicably related to municipalities? performance. Este trabajo analiza la eficiencia de las corporaciones locales de la ComunidadValenciana y sus factores determinantes. El análisis se lleva a cabo en dos etapas. Enprimer lugar, la eficiencia es medida a través de técnicas (no paramétricas) de análisisde la actividad. El empleo de este tipo de técnicas permite también identificar lasfuentes de ineficiencia, esto es, si esta es básicamente en costes, técnica o de carácterasignativo. La segunda etapa identifica algunos determinantes clave de la eficiencia,centrándose tanto en variables políticas, así como de política fiscal. Frente a estudiosprevios en dos etapas, nuestro enfoque lleva a cabo este último objetivo a través detécnicas no paramétricas de suavizado, en lugar de métodos econométricos (tales comoMCO o modelos Tobit). Los resultados indican que

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 51 (2007)
Issue (Month): 2 (February)
Pages: 425-451

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:51:y:2007:i:2:p:425-451
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eer

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