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Assessing the regional sustainability performance in China using the global Malmquist-Luenberger productivity index

Kai-di Liu (Institutes of Science and Development, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China and University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China)
Duo-Gui Yang (Institutes of Science and Development, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China and University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China)
Guoliang Yang (Institutes of Science and Development, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China and University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China)
Zhi-Tian Zhou (Institutes of Science and Development, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China and University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China)

International Journal of Energy Sector Management

ISSN: 1750-6220

Article publication date: 4 April 2020

Issue publication date: 26 July 2021

278

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate the situation and evolution of sustainability performance in China.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper adopts the global Malmquist-Luenberger (GML) productivity index based on data envelopment analysis and Tobit regression for analysis.

Findings

The results indicate the following: China’s sustainability performance has been improving since 2005 and is closely related to the national development strategy and supportive policy; regional gaps in sustainability are a prominent problem represented by the fact that South Central China is becoming a sustainability collapse zone; interprovincial heterogeneity is evident with the varying development speed and conditions; and the level of sustainability performance has a significantly positive correlation with the urbanization rate, investment completed in the treatment of industrial pollution, government appropriation for education and per capita area of paved roads, but it has a negative correlation with the possession of private vehicles.

Originality/value

As an application, this study assessing the GML productivity index of 30 provinces in China from 2005 to 2015 and analyse the sustainability performance on three regional levels (i.e. country level, regional level and provincial level). Tobit regression is also applied to recognize the factors related to the GML index with the results taken as references for policy suggestions. The results have implications for a comprehensive understanding of China's sustainability performance and policymaking in this field.

Keywords

Citation

Liu, K.-d., Yang, D.-G., Yang, G. and Zhou, Z.-T. (2021), "Assessing the regional sustainability performance in China using the global Malmquist-Luenberger productivity index", International Journal of Energy Sector Management, Vol. 15 No. 4, pp. 820-854. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJESM-03-2019-0023

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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