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Technical efficiency in multi-mode bus transit: A production frontier analysis


  • Viton, Philip A.


This paper studies the efficiency of U.S. multi-mode bus transit systems by asking whether they could expand their service (outputs) without requiring additional resources (inputs); or whether they could reduce input utilization without having to reduce service. A system which can do neither is said to be "technically efficient". The technological possibilities facing the industry are identified by computing a piecewise-linear best-practice production frontier exhibiting variable returns to scale and weak disposal. The findings indicate that 80% of the bus systems studied are technically efficient, and that the extent of inefficiency in the industry is slight.

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  • Viton, Philip A., 1997. "Technical efficiency in multi-mode bus transit: A production frontier analysis," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 23-39, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:transb:v:31:y:1997:i:1:p:23-39

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Fare,Rolf & Grosskopf,Shawna & Lovell,C. A. Knox, 2008. "Production Frontiers," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521072069, March.
    2. Grosskopf, S, 1986. "The Role of the Reference Technology in Measuring Productive Efficiency," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 96(382), pages 499-513, June.
    3. Pestieau, P. & Tulkens, H., 1990. "Assessing the performance of the public sector activities: some recent evidence from the productive efficiency viewpoint," CORE Discussion Papers 1990060, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    4. Charnes, A. & Cooper, W. W. & Rhodes, E., 1978. "Measuring the efficiency of decision making units," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 2(6), pages 429-444, November.
    5. Fare, Rolf & Knox Lovell, C. A., 1978. "Measuring the technical efficiency of production," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 150-162, October.
    6. Sickles, Robin C. & Good, David & Johnson, Richard L., 1986. "Allocative distortions and the regulatory transition of the U.S. airline industry," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1-2), pages 143-163.
    7. Viton, Philip A., 1992. "Consolidations of scale and scope in urban transit," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 25-49, March.
    8. R. D. Banker & A. Charnes & W. W. Cooper, 1984. "Some Models for Estimating Technical and Scale Inefficiencies in Data Envelopment Analysis," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 30(9), pages 1078-1092, September.
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