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Benchmarking educational development efficiencies of the Indian states: a DEA approach

Vidyashankar Gourishankar (Department of Management Studies, Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Chennai, India)
Prakash Sai Lokachari (Department of Management Studies, Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Chennai, India)

International Journal of Educational Management

ISSN: 0951-354X

Article publication date: 13 January 2012




In pursuit of achieving Education‐For‐All goals of universal primary education and improving quality of education, the Indian Government has been providing substantial resources to Indian states. The responsibility of providing access and quality remains the states' responsibility. Assessment of educational development will therefore become a focal point of the Center for Education Policy & Guidelines Formulation. While educational development indices help in ranking states, they do not help in capturing best practices and assessing the efficient utilization of resources. Assessment of the Educational Development Efficiency can augment educational development indices in vogue. The purpose of this paper is to develop an Educational Development Efficiency (EDE) model to benchmark the Indian states.


This paper uses an input‐process‐output conceptual framework to identify the dimensions of educational development. This paper employs Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) to compare relative efficiency of 28 states and seven Union territories in India and benchmark them. In order to strengthen the discriminatory power of DEA, cross‐efficiency model was used. Factor analysis was performed to determine the inter‐relationships between variables. The efficiency impacting variables were identified using multiple regression analysis.


This paper benchmarked Indian states on educational development based on their performance. Gross enrolment ratio, students' academic performance and infrastructural investments were identified as the three key variables impacting states' EDE. This paper has shown that the educational administrators can use the EDE model to identify the best practices from efficient states. Insights into utilization of input resources to enhance educational development and consequent improvement of state efficiencies are presented. Four components have been identified to analyze the states' educational development progress – namely, financial adequacy, school resource strength, educational quality and educational access.

Practical implications

Contributions of this paper pertain to evolving a decision support model for national education policy planners, besides providing analytic support to the administrators of the states to benchmark and emulate the efficient educational programs.


This paper is one of the few published studies concerning the evaluation of educational development programs launched in the Indian schools and providing a cross‐comparison of the Indian states for the purposes of performance benchmarking as well as exploring the influencing factors.



Gourishankar, V. and Sai Lokachari, P. (2012), "Benchmarking educational development efficiencies of the Indian states: a DEA approach", International Journal of Educational Management, Vol. 26 No. 1, pp. 99-130.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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