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Non-parametric Approaches to Education and Health Expenditure Efficiency in OECD Countries

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  • António Afonso
  • Miguel St. Aubyn

Abstract

We address the efficiency of expenditure in education and health sectors for a sample of OECD countries by applying two alternative non-parametric methodologies: FDH and DEA. Those are two areas where public expenditure is of great importance so that findings have strong implications in what concerns public sector efficiency. When estimating the efficiency frontier we use both measures of expenditure and quantity inputs. We believe this approach to be advantageous since a country may well be efficient from a technical point of view but appear as inefficient if the inputs it uses are expensive. Efficient outcomes across sectors and analytical methods seem to cluster around a small number of core countries, even if for different reasons: Finland, Japan, Korea and Sweden.

Suggested Citation

  • António Afonso & Miguel St. Aubyn, 2004. "Non-parametric Approaches to Education and Health Expenditure Efficiency in OECD Countries," Working Papers Department of Economics 2004/01, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.
  • Handle: RePEc:ise:isegwp:wp12004
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Fakin, Barbara & de Crombrugghe, Alain, 1997. "Field adjustments in transition economies : social transfers and the efficiency of public spending - a comparison with OECD countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1803, The World Bank.
    2. Hanushek, Eric A. & Luque, Javier A., 2003. "Efficiency and equity in schools around the world," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(5), pages 481-502, October.
    3. Lee, Jong-Wha & Barro, Robert J, 2001. "Schooling Quality in a Cross-Section of Countries," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 68(272), pages 465-488, November.
    4. Gupta, Sanjeev & Verhoeven, Marijn, 2001. "The efficiency of government expenditure: experiences from Africa," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 433-467, May.
    5. De Borger, Bruno & Kerstens, Kristiaan, 1996. "Cost efficiency of Belgian local governments: A comparative analysis of FDH, DEA, and econometric approaches," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 145-170, April.
    6. António Afonso & Ludger Schuknecht & Vito Tanzi, 2005. "Public sector efficiency: An international comparison," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 123(3), pages 321-347, June.
    7. 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.
    8. António Afonso & Sónia Fernandes, 2003. "Efficiency of Local Government Spending: Evidence for the Lisbon Region," Working Papers Department of Economics 2003/09, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    expenditure and education; expenditure and health; expenditure efficiency; production possibility frontier; FDH; DEA;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy
    • H51 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Health
    • H52 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Education
    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General

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