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Efficiency measurement in public transport: Are findings specification sensitive?

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  • Karlaftis, Matthew G.
  • Tsamboulas, Dimitrios

Abstract

The need to measure transit system performance along with its various dimensions such as efficiency and effectiveness has led to the development of a wide array of approaches and vast literature. However, depending upon the specific approach used to examine performance, different conclusions are oftentimes reached. Using data from 15 European transit systems for a ten year time period (1990–2000), this paper discusses three important transit performance questions; (i) Do different efficiency assessment methodologies produce similar results? (ii) How are the two basic dimensions of transit performance, namely efficiency and effectiveness, related? and (iii) Are findings regarding organizational regimes (public operations, contracting and so on) sensitive to the methodological specifications employed? Results clearly indicate that efficiency scores and associated recommendations are sensitive to the models used, while efficiency and effectiveness are – albeit weakly – negatively related; these two findings can have far reaching policy implications.

Suggested Citation

  • Karlaftis, Matthew G. & Tsamboulas, Dimitrios, 2012. "Efficiency measurement in public transport: Are findings specification sensitive?," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 392-402.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:transa:v:46:y:2012:i:2:p:392-402
    DOI: 10.1016/j.tra.2011.10.005
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