The Impact of Privatisation on the Efficiency of Train Operation in Britain
Twenty-five train operating companies (TOCs) were created between 1994-1997, as part of the restructuring process of the railway industry in Great Britain. The TOCs operate monopoly franchises for the provision of passenger rail services over certain routes - some of which continue to receive government subsidies. This paper investigates how the efficiency of these train operating companies evolved prior to the October 2000 Hatfield crash (which caused significant disruption to the network) using data envelopment analysis and stochastic frontier analysis. Our data allows us to look at the relative efficiency and productivity through the privatisation, to control the efficiency scores for environmental data and to correlate these results with safety and quality indicators. The analysis sheds some light on the successes and failures of the UK’s most controversial privatisation to date.
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