IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/zbw/tudcep/1417.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The transient and persistent efficiency of Italian and German universities: A stochastic frontier analysis

Author

Listed:
  • Agasisti, Tommaso
  • Gralka, Sabine

Abstract

Despite measures on the European level to increase the compatibility between the HE sectors of the member states, the recent literature exposes variations in their efficiencies. To gain insights into these differences we split the efficiency term according to the two management levels each university is confronted with. Utilizing a recent advancement in the method to measure efficiency, we separate short-term (transient) and long-term (persistent) efficiency, while controlling for unobserved institution specific heterogeneity. While the first term reflects the efficiency of the individual universities working within the country, the second term echoes the influence of the country specific overall HE structure. The cross-country comparison displays if the overall efficiency difference between countries is related to individual performance of their universities or their HE structure. This allows more purposeful policy recommendation and expands the literature regarding the efficiency of universities in a fundamental way. Choosing Italy and Germany as two important illustrative examples we can take advantage of a novel dataset including characteristics of institutions in both countries for an exceptional long period of time from 2001 to 2011. We show that the Italian universities exhibit a higher overall efficiency value than their German counterparts. With the individual universities working at the upper bound of efficiency in both countries, the overall inefficiency as well as the gap between the countries is caused by persistent, structural inefficiency. To expedite a true European Area of Higher Education future measures should hence aim at the country specific structure, not solely at affecting the activities of single universities.

Suggested Citation

  • Agasisti, Tommaso & Gralka, Sabine, 2017. "The transient and persistent efficiency of Italian and German universities: A stochastic frontier analysis," CEPIE Working Papers 14/17, Technische Universität Dresden, Center of Public and International Economics (CEPIE).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:tudcep:1417
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/169374/1/898717949.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Roberto Colombi & Subal Kumbhakar & Gianmaria Martini & Giorgio Vittadini, 2014. "Closed-skew normality in stochastic frontiers with individual effects and long/short-run efficiency," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 42(2), pages 123-136, October.
    2. Barra, Cristian & Lagravinese, Raffaele & Zotti, Roberto, 2015. "Explaining (in)efficiency in higher education: a comparison of parametric and non-parametric analyses to rank universities," MPRA Paper 67119, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Philip Andrew Stevens, 2005. "A Stochastic Frontier Analysis of English and Welsh Universities," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(4), pages 355-374.
    4. Massimo Filippini & William Greene, 2016. "Persistent and transient productive inefficiency: a maximum simulated likelihood approach," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 45(2), pages 187-196, April.
    5. Malcolm Abbott & Chris Doucouliagos, 2009. "Competition and efficiency: overseas students and technical efficiency in Australian and New Zealand universities," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(1), pages 31-57.
    6. Gerhard Kempkes & Carsten Pohl, 2010. "The efficiency of German universities-some evidence from nonparametric and parametric methods," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(16), pages 2063-2079.
    7. Willam Greene, 2005. "Fixed and Random Effects in Stochastic Frontier Models," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 23(1), pages 7-32, January.
    8. Subal C. Kumbhakar & Almas Heshmati, 1995. "Efficiency Measurement in Swedish Dairy Farms: An Application of Rotating Panel Data, 1976–88," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 77(3), pages 660-674.
    9. Philippe Aghion & Mathias Dewatripont & Caroline Hoxby & Andreu Mas-Colell & André Sapir, 2010. "The governance and performance of universities: evidence from Europe and the US," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 25, pages 7-59, January.
    10. Tommaso Agasisti & Carsten Pohl, 2012. "Comparing German and Italian Public Universities: Convergence or Divergence in the Higher Education Landscape?," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 33, pages 71-85, March.
    11. Erik E. Lehmann & Michele Meoli & Stefano Paleari & Sarah A. E. Stockinger, 2018. "Approaching effects of the economic crisis on university efficiency: a comparative study of Germany and Italy," Eurasian Business Review, Springer;Eurasia Business and Economics Society, vol. 8(1), pages 37-54, March.
    12. Pereira, João & St. Aubyn, Miguel, 2009. "What level of education matters most for growth?: Evidence from Portugal," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 67-73, February.
    13. Tommaso Agasisti & Geraint Johnes, 2009. "Beyond frontiers: comparing the efficiency of higher education decision-making units across more than one country," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(1), pages 59-79.
    14. Sabine Gralka, 2018. "Persistent inefficiency in the higher education sector: evidence from Germany," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(4), pages 373-392, July.
    15. Badunenko, Oleg & Kumbhakar, Subal C., 2016. "When, where and how to estimate persistent and transient efficiency in stochastic frontier panel data models," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 255(1), pages 272-287.
    16. Andrew Worthington, 2001. "An Empirical Survey of Frontier Efficiency Measurement Techniques in Education," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(3), pages 245-268.
    17. Koshal, Rajindar K. & Koshal, Manjulika, 1999. "Economies of scale and scope in higher education: a case of comprehensive universities," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 269-277, April.
    18. Battese, George E. & Coelli, Tim J., 1988. "Prediction of firm-level technical efficiencies with a generalized frontier production function and panel data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 387-399, July.
    19. Geraint Johnes & Astrid Schwarzenberger, 2011. "Differences in cost structure and the evaluation of efficiency: the case of German universities," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(5), pages 487-499, January.
    20. Subal Kumbhakar & Gudbrand Lien & J. Hardaker, 2014. "Technical efficiency in competing panel data models: a study of Norwegian grain farming," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 41(2), pages 321-337, April.
    21. Johnes, Jill & Johnes, Geraint, 1995. "Research funding and performance in U.K. University Departments of Economics: A frontier analysis," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 301-314, September.
    22. Johnes, Geraint, 1997. "Costs and Industrial Structure in Contemporary British Higher Education," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(442), pages 727-737, May.
    23. repec:spr:scient:v:89:y:2011:i:3:d:10.1007_s11192-011-0484-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    24. Kumbhakar,Subal C. & Wang,Hung-Jen & Horncastle,Alan P., 2015. "A Practitioner's Guide to Stochastic Frontier Analysis Using Stata," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9781107029514, August.
    25. Ahmad, Munir & Boris E., Bravo-Ureta, 1996. "Technical efficiency measures for dairy farms using panel data: a comparison of alternative model specifications," MPRA Paper 37703, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    26. Bolli, Thomas & Olivares, Maria & Bonaccorsi, Andrea & Daraio, Cinzia & Aracil, Adela Garcia & Lepori, Benedetto, 2016. "The differential effects of competitive funding on the production frontier and the efficiency of universities," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 91-104.
    27. Tommaso Agasisti, 2016. "Cost structure, productivity and efficiency of the Italian public higher education industry 2001--2011," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(1), pages 48-68, January.
    28. Tommaso Agasisti, 2011. "Performances and spending efficiency in higher education: a European comparison through non-parametric approaches," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 199-224.
    29. Christensen, Laurits R & Greene, William H, 1976. "Economies of Scale in U.S. Electric Power Generation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(4), pages 655-676, August.
    30. Aigner, Dennis & Lovell, C. A. Knox & Schmidt, Peter, 1977. "Formulation and estimation of stochastic frontier production function models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 21-37, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Gralka, Sabine & Wohlrabe, Klaus & Bornmann, Lutz, 2017. "The Completion Shift of German Universities of Applied Sciences," MPRA Paper 82794, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Sabine Gralka & Klaus Wohlrabe & Lutz Bornmann, 2018. "How to Measure Research Efficiency in Higher Education? Research Grants vs. Publication Output," CESifo Working Paper Series 7055, CESifo Group Munich.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Stochastic Frontier Analysis; Persistent Inefficiency; Higher Education; Costfunction; Italy; Germany;

    JEL classification:

    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • D61 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis
    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid
    • I23 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Higher Education; Research Institutions
    • H52 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Education

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:zbw:tudcep:1417. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/pltudde.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.