The Impacts of Airport Centrality in the EU Network and Inter- Airport Competition on Airport Efficiency
In this paper we study the relationship between airport efficiency and two factors: an airport’s centrality in the EU network, and the intensity of competition from alternative airports in the same catchment area. We apply a two-stage econometric model based on the Simar & Wilson (2007) bootstrap procedure to a balanced sample of 57 European airports. We also design and compute our own measures of airport centrality and competition. The results show that efficiency is positively related to centrality in the European network, as measured by a weighted sum of minimal paths passing through the airport in question. The intensity of competition between airports also has a positive effect on efficiency. Our analysis suggests that air transportation policies should focus on increasing competition within important catchment areas (e.g., by investing in infrastructure facilitating access to alternative airports) and enhancing the connectivity of the EU network (e.g., by subsidizing new point-to-point connections between airports with capacity to spare).
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