Estimating complex production functions: The importance of starting values
Production functions that take into account uncertainty can be empirically estimated by taking a state contingent view of the world. Where there is no a priori information to allocate data amongst a small number of states, the estimation may be carried out with finite mixtures model. The complexity of the estimation almost guarantees a large number of local maxima for the likelihood function. However, it is shown, with examples, that a variation on the traditional method of finding starting values substantially improves the estimation results. One of the major benefits of the proposed method is the reliable estimation of a decision maker's ability to substitute output between states, justifying a preference for the state contingent approach over the use of a stochastic production function.
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- Meeusen, Wim & van den Broeck, Julien, 1977. "Efficiency Estimation from Cobb-Douglas Production Functions with Composed Error," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 18(2), pages 435-444, June.
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- repec:tcd:wpaper:tep4 is not listed on IDEAS
- C.J. O'Donnell & W.E. Griffiths, 2004.
"Estimating State-Contingent Production Frontiers,"
Department of Economics - Working Papers Series
911, The University of Melbourne.
- Tonsor, Glynn T. & Kastens, Terry L., 2006. "How Much Do Starting Values Really Matter? An Empirical Comparison of Genetic Algorithm and Traditional Approaches," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21252, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
- Karlis, Dimitris & Xekalaki, Evdokia, 2003. "Choosing initial values for the EM algorithm for finite mixtures," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 41(3-4), pages 577-590, January.
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