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A One-Step Procedure for Returns to Scale Classification of Decision Making Units in Data Envelopment Analysis

  • Subhash C. Ray

    (University of Connecticut)

The input-output bundle of an efficient decision making unit (DMU) is located at a specific point on the frontier of the production possibility set. Returns to Scale (RTS) at this point can be unequivocally characterized. For an inefficient DMU, however, the input- and output-oriented projections on to the frontier will be different and RTS classifications at these two points may differ. In the existing literature, one needs to solve two DEA problems, one input-oriented and another output-oriented to determine the nature of RTS at these two different efficient projections. This paper shows how one can determine the returns to scale properties of an inefficient bundle simultaneously at both projections from the optimal solution of a single CCR-DEA problem either output- or input-oriented. A data set used by Christensen and Greene in their well known study of US electric utilities is used for an illustration of the proposed method in a numerical example.

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Paper provided by University of Connecticut, Department of Economics in its series Working papers with number 2010-07.

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Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:uct:uconnp:2010-07
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  1. Kerstens, Kristiaan & Vanden Eeckaut, Philippe, 1999. "Estimating returns to scale using non-parametric deterministic technologies: A new method based on goodness-of-fit," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 113(1), pages 206-214, February.
  2. R. D. Banker & A. Charnes & W. W. Cooper, 1984. "Some Models for Estimating Technical and Scale Inefficiencies in Data Envelopment Analysis," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 30(9), pages 1078-1092, September.
  3. Banker, Rajiv D., 1984. "Estimating most productive scale size using data envelopment analysis," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 35-44, July.
  4. Banker, Rajiv D. & Cooper, William W. & Seiford, Lawrence M. & Thrall, Robert M. & Zhu, Joe, 2004. "Returns to scale in different DEA models," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 154(2), pages 345-362, April.
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