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The impact of competition on productive efficiency in European railways

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  • Gertjan Driessen

    ()

  • Mark Lijesen

    ()

  • Machiel Mulder

    ()

Abstract

This paper empirically explores the relationship between competition design and productive efficiency in the railway industry. We use Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) to construct efficiency scores, and explain these scores, using variables reflecting institutional factors and competition design. Our results suggest that competitive tendering improves productive efficiency, which is in line with economic intuition as well as with expectations on the design of competition. We also find that free entry lowers productive efficiency. A possible explanation for this result is that free entry may disable railway operators to reap economies of density. Our final result is that more autonomy of management lowers productive efficiency. Most of the incumbent railway companies are state owned and do not face any competitive pressure. As a consequence, increased independence without sufficient competition and adequate regulation may deteriorate incentives for productive efficiency.

Suggested Citation

  • Gertjan Driessen & Mark Lijesen & Machiel Mulder, 2006. "The impact of competition on productive efficiency in European railways," CPB Discussion Paper 71, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpb:discus:71
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:trapol:v:60:y:2017:i:c:p:143-151 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Link, Heike, 2016. "A Two-Stage Efficiency Analysis of Rail Passenger Franchising in Germany," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 76-92.
    3. José A. Gómez-Ibáñez, 2016. "Open Access to Infrastructure Networks: The Experience of Railroads," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 49(2), pages 311-345, September.
    4. Steffen Juranek, 2016. "Creating a National Champion: International Competition and Unbundling in Rail Transportation," Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, University of Bath, vol. 50(1), pages 56-75, January.
    5. Abate, Megersa & Lijesen, Mark & Pels, Eric & Roelevelt, Adriaan, 2013. "The impact of reliability on the productivity of railroad companies," Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 41-49.
    6. Sabien Dobbelaere & Mark Vancauteren, 2014. "Market imperfections, skills and total factor productivity : Firm-level evidence on Belgium and the Netherlands," Working Paper Research 267, National Bank of Belgium.
    7. Finger, Matthias, 2014. "Governance of competition and performance in European railways: An analysis of five cases," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 278-288.
    8. Orea, Luis & Rodríguez-Álvarez, Ana & Kumbhakar, Subal, 2008. "Explaining Occupancy Rates in the European Railways: a Reduced-Form Approach," Efficiency Series Papers 2008/04, University of Oviedo, Department of Economics, Oviedo Efficiency Group (OEG).
    9. Mette Asmild & Torben Holvad & Jens Hougaard & Dorte Kronborg, 2009. "Railway reforms: do they influence operating efficiency?," Transportation, Springer, pages 617-638.
    10. Viktoria Kocsis & Victoria Shestalova & Henry van der Wiel & Nick Zubanov & Ruslan Lukach & Bert Minne, 2009. "Relation entry, exit and productivity: an overview of recent theoretical and empirical literature," CPB Document 180, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
    11. Gwilliam, Ken, 2008. "A review of issues in transit economics," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 4-22, January.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity
    • H42 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Publicly Provided Private Goods
    • L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance
    • L33 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Comparison of Public and Private Enterprise and Nonprofit Institutions; Privatization; Contracting Out
    • L92 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Railroads and Other Surface Transportation

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