IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Performance Measurement for Railway Transport: Stochastic Distance Functions with Inefficiency and Ineffectiveness Effects

  • Lawrence W. Lan
  • Erwin T. J. Lin
Registered author(s):

    To scrutinise the plausible sources of poor performance for non-storable transport services, it is necessary to distinguish technical inefficiency from service ineffectiveness. This paper attempts to measure the performance of railways that produce passenger and freight services by two stochastic distance function approaches. A stochastic input distance function with an inefficiency effect is defined to evaluate technical efficiency; whereas a stochastic consumption distance function with an ineffectiveness effect is introduced to assess service effectiveness. The empirical analysis examines 39 worldwide railway systems over eight years (1995-2002) where inputs contain number of passenger cars, number of freight cars, and number of employees, while outputs contain passenger train-kilometres and freight train-kilometres, and consumptions contain passenger-kilometres and ton-kilometres. The findings show that railways' technical inefficiency and service ineffectiveness are negatively influenced by gross national income per capita, percentage of electrified lines, and line density. Overall, the railways in West Europe perform more efficiently and effectively than those in East Europe and Non-European regions. Strategies for ameliorating the operation of less-efficient and/or less-effective railways are proposed. © 2006 LSE and the University of Bath

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:;1-
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by London School of Economics and University of Bath in its journal Journal of Transport Economics and Policy.

    Volume (Year): 40 (2006)
    Issue (Month): 3 (September)
    Pages: 383-408

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:tpe:jtecpo:v:40:y:2006:i:3:p:383-408
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:tpe:jtecpo:v:40:y:2006:i:3:p:383-408. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Christopher F. Baum)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.