The workshop will consist of engaging presentations on Recent Advances in Productivity and Efficiency Analysis: Theory and Practice. It will focus on both theoretical and applied issues. The topics covered will include productivity and efficiency in industries such as the banking and energy sectors and analysing world productivity and efficiency dynamics.

We are delighted that together with you, we will have an opportunity to listen to many interesting presentations, including keynote addresses from this year’s guests:

  • Jaap Bos, Professor of Banking and Finance, Maastricht University School of Business and Economics
  • Nanak Kakwani, Visiting scholar at IPEA in Brazil in 2014 working on social policies in BRICS countries. He was Director/Chief Economist (2003-2006) at the UNDP’s International Poverty Centre in Brasilia Brazil
  • Hun-Jen Wang (Professor of Economics, Director, Research Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences, Ministry of Science and Technology, 

The confirmed CEPA speakers include Chris O’Donnell, Antonio Peyrache, Prasada Rao, Valentin Zelenyuk, as well as their students.

Workshop program

Day 1: Thrursday 20 October 2016

2:30pm – 3:00pm Registration
Colin Clark Building (#39), room 103

3:00pm - 3:10pm Opening: Valentin Zelenyuk (CEPA/UQ)
Colin Clark Building (#39), room 103

3:10pm - 4:10pm Keynote by Hung-Jen Wang (National Taiwan University, Taiwan)
Colin Clark Building (#39), room 103 

4:10pm – 4:30pm  Afternoon Tea - outside room 103 

4:30pm-6:40pm Invited Session: Theoretical Advances in Productivity and Efficiency, Chair: Alicia Rambaldi (CEPA/UQ)
Colin Clark Building (#39), room 103

4:30pm – 5:00pm Hien Pham Thu (UQ), Convex and Non-Convex Industry Inefficiency Measures
Colin Clark Building (#39), room 103

5:00pm – 5:40pm Antonio Peyrache (CEPA/UQ), Parallel Networks and Output Specific Inputs
Colin Clark Building (#39), room 103

5:40pm - 6:40pm Invited presentation: Hideyuki Mizobuchi (Ryukoku University), A Family of Exact Productivity Indexes
Colin Clark Building (#39), room 103 

7:30pm Dinner in the City (optional)

Day 2: Friday 21 October 2016

8:30am – 10:30am Invited Session on Measurement of Inequality and Poverty, Chair: Prasada Rao (CEPA/UQ)
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

8:30am – 9:00am Dongjie Wu (UQ), Measuring Inequality of Opportunity in China using a Finite Mixture
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

9:00am – 9:45am Paul Makdissi (University of Ottawa, Canada), Robust Orderings of Socio-economic Health Inequality: Measurement and Nonparametric Inference
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

9:45am – 10:30am Keynote by Nanak Kakwani (IPEA, Brazil), Measuring Social Tension
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

10:30 am – 11:00am Morning Tea - outside room S302

11:00am – 11:40am Chris O'Donnell (CEPA/UQ), Estimating The Minimum Cost of Operating Australian Electricity
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

11:40am – 12:00 Russel Cooper (UNSW), Consumer Expectations: A Residual Based Approach
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

12pm - 12:30pm David Du (CEPA/UQ), DEA + Truncated Regression with Bootstrap allowing for Different Frontiers: Theory and Applications
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

12:30pm - 2:00pm Lunch Break

2:00pm – 2:20pm Prasada Rao (CEPA/UQ), Aggregation and Productivity Measurement
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

2:20pm – 2:40pm Duc Manh Pham (CEPA/UQ), Slack-Based Directional Distance Function in the Presence of Bad Outputs: Theory and Application to Vietnamese Banking
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

2:40pm – 3:00pm Valentin Zelenyuk (CEPA/UQ), Unifying Framework for Profit Efficiency
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

3:00pm – 3:30pm Afternoon Tea - outside room S302

3:30pm – 4:30pm Keynote by Jaap Bos (University of Maastricht, Netherlands), Money Left on the Table: Large Bank Failures During the Crisis
Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

4:30pm – 4:45pm Break

4:45pm – 6:00pm Panel Discussion: Productivity and Efficiency: Quo Vadis? Questions to discuss:

  • What is the future of the field of productivity and efficiency?
  • Should the area need to focus more on theory (of economics or of statistics?), on empirics (economics or business?) or on policy?
  • Is current applied work up to date with the theory?
  • Is current theory addressing the most important practical questions?
  • Is current applied work addressing the needs of policy-making?
  • Did it get harder to publish papers on productivity and efficiency in top journals? If so, why?
  • Did it get harder to publish papers on productivity and efficiency in top journals in the field of productivity and efficiency? If so, why?

Hartley Teakle Building (#83), room S302

6:15pm Farewell dinner at St Lucy's Cafe (optional)

Workshop Speakers

Keynote speaker: Hung-Jen Wang (National Taiwan University, Taiwan)

Title: A Stochastic Frontier Model with Endogenous Treatment Status and Mediator (Authors: Yi-Ting Chen, Yu-Chin Hsu, and Hung-Jen Wang)

Abstract: Government policies are frequently used throughout the world to promote productivity. Some of the policies are designed to enhance production technology, and others are meant to improve production efficiency. In addition, another issue to consider in designing and evaluating policies is whether a mediator is required/effective in achieving the final outcome. To better understand and evaluate the policies, we propose a new stochastic frontier model with a treatment status and a mediator, both of which are allowed to be endogenous. The model allows us to decompose the total program (treatment) effect into the technology and efficiency components, and it also allows us to investigate whether the effect takes place directly from the program or indirectly through a particular mediator. We illustrate the empirical application of the model using data for India to study the effects of large dams on the local districts' agricultural production.

About Hung-Jen Wang

Hung-Jen Wang is a Professor of Economics at the National Taiwan University. A Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Michigan in 1998, his research fields include empirical macroeconomics and applied econometrics. He is currently interested in issues related to panel stochastic frontier model estimation.
He has published in journals including Journal of Econometrics, Journal of Business and Economic Statistics, Economic Inquiry, and Journal of Productivity Analysis. He serves as an associate editor in several journals, including Journal of Productivity Analysis, Empirical Economics, and Pacific Economic Review.

Together with Subal Kumbhakar and Alan Horncastle, he published the book “A Practitioner’s Guide to Stochastic Frontier Analysis Using Stata” (Cambridge, 2015) which provides practitioners in academia and industry with a step-by-step guide on how to conduct efficiency analysis using the stochastic frontier approach.

Keynote speaker: Nanak Kakwani (IPEA, Brazil)

Title: Measuring Social Tension

Abstract: Different types of social tensions can lead to social unrest. Inequality and poverty, for instance, could cause social tension given temporal fluctuations in living standards including both systemic and idiosyncratic sources of risk. Social tensions may also arise from immobility among social groups, polarization, and issues relating to middle class. This paper provides a common methodology to model different sources of social tensions. Social tension has many dimensions shaped by economic, social, and political factors. Some of these dimensions are not quantifiable. This paper deals with dimensions of social tension that can be quantified using available data from household surveys. The following aspects of social tension will be considered in the chapter: (i) high inequality, (ii) existence of poverty, (iii) shrinking middle class and increased polarization, (iv) growth volatility, and (v) social immobility. Measuring each of these dimensions will require normative judgments, which become explicit using a social welfare function. A social welfare function is primarily used to identify policies that work and those that do not. From any public policy perspective, various policies affect individuals differently; some lose while others gain. Hence, it is inevitable to make some form of normative judgments in the assessment of policies using social welfare functions. Social welfare functions help specify judgments on the weights rendered to different individuals. This paper aims to derive social welfare functions that explicitly incorporate judgments about various types of social tension. Such social welfare functions provide the basis for the measurement of social tension. These social welfare functions are applied in Brazil’s case, with an empirical analysis of levels and trends of various types of social tension in the country from 1992 to 2012 using data from a national household survey called the Pesquisa Nacional por Amostra de Domicílio (PNAD).

About Nanak Kakwani

Professor Nanak Kakwani was a visiting scholar at IPEA in Brazil in 2014 working on social policies in BRICS countries. He was the Principal Researcher for one year (January 2005 to November 2006) and Director/Chief Economist for two years (January 2003 to January 2006) at the UNDP’s International Poverty Centre in Brasilia Brazil. Before joining IPC, he had been Professor for 30 years at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. His research areas include poverty, inequality, pro-poor growth, taxation, social policies, human development (MDG), etc. He has published more than 100 articles in international journals and 5 books, one by Cambridge University Press, one by Oxford University Press and two jointly edited books (with Jacques Silber) by Palgrave Macmillan. He was elected as fellow of Australian Research Committee of Social Science. He was also awarded Mahalanobis gold medal for outstanding contribution in quantitative economics. He is on the advisory board of the Journal of Economic Inequality. He has been visiting professor at many universities and consultant to the World Bank, UNDP and the Asian Development Bank.

Keynote speaker: Jaap Bos (University of Maastricht, Netherlands)

Title: Money Left on the Table: Large Bank Failures During the Crisis

Abstract: Why do banks fail? In this paper, I develop a model where a bank learns how to be efficient - it learns from its own recent past, as well as from its peers. Based on the model, I can build each bank’s counterfactual efficiency: how efficient the bank could be, if it had implemented the optimal strategy resulting from the model. The different between the actual and ‘optimal’ efficiency is - quite literally - money left on the table. I apply the model to large independent banks and bank holding companies in the United States. In a setup that is similar to what was previously used by Wheelock and Wilson (2000) and Bos et al. (2005), I test whether and how this money left on the table predicts large bank failures.

About Jaap Bos

Jaap Bos (PhD 2002, Maastricht) is an economist specializing in banking and growth empirics. He is Professor of Banking and Finance at Maastricht University and Chair of the Finance Department. His work has been published in the Journal of Business, the European Economic Review, the Journal of Development Economics, the European Journal of Operational Research and the Journal of Banking and Finance.

His research interests include the role of productivity differences, spillovers and innovation in explaining economic growth, and the analysis of micro-developments in efficiency and competition. From 2002 to 2004, while working at the Netherlands Central Bank, he was a member of the Basel II Research Task Force. In 2005, he was a guest editor of the Journal of Banking and Finance, editing a special issue on ‘Banking and Finance in an Integrating Europe’, with Klaas Knot (Ministry of Finance) and Clemens Kool (Utrecht University).

Together with Jacob Bikker (Netherlands Central Bank), he published “Bank Performance” (Routledge, 2008), a theoretical and empirical framework for the analysis of profitability, competition and efficiency. In 2009, he was a member of the research team that investigated the credit crisis for Dutch parliament as part of a parliamentary investigation.

Invited speaker: Hideyuki Mizobuchi (Ryukoku University, Japan)

Title: A Family of Exact Productivity Indexes (Authors: Hideyuki Mizobuchi and Valentin Zelenyuk)

Abstract: When an index number formula coincides with a theoretical index under a functional form for the underlying aggregator function, it is called an exact index. The present paper proposes a family of index number formula for productivity measurement and show that they are exact indexes of Malmquist or Hicks-Moorsteen productivity indexes when the distance function has the quadratic mean of order r functional form. For r equals 2, the resulting index is Fisher productivity index. The exact result for Fisher productivity by Diewert (1992) is shown to be obtained as a corollary.

About Hideyuki Mizobuchi

Hideyuki Mizobuchi is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Economics at Ryukoku University in Japan where he has been a faculty member since 2011. He completed his Ph.D. at the University of British Columbia (under supervision of Erwin W. Diewert) and his undergraduate studies at Tohoku University. He has held a previous visiting appointment at School of Economics and Centre for Efficiency and Productivity Analysis, The University of Queensland. His research interests lie in the area of economic measurement. He has focused on the search for better index number formulae for measuring cost of living, productivity and welfare.



About CEPA courses and workshops

CEPA short-courses and workshops are aimed at graduate students, researchers, economists, statisticians and consultants from private and public sector organisations. Participants are generally expected to have an understanding of microeconomics and econometrics similar to that of a second or third-year economics undergraduate at an Australian university.



Colin Clark and Hartley Teakle Buildings, The University of Queensland, St Lucia