Guest editorial

International Journal of Energy Sector Management

ISSN: 1750-6220

Article publication date: 14 September 2010



Emrouznejad, A. (2010), "Guest editorial", International Journal of Energy Sector Management, Vol. 4 No. 3.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Guest editorial

Article Type: Guest editorial From: International Journal of Energy Sector Management, Volume 4, Issue 3

About the Guest Editors Ali Emrouznejad is a Senior Lecturer at the Aston Business School in Birmingham, UK. His areas of research interest include performance measurement and management, efficiency and productivity analysis as well as data mining. He has published widely in various international journals. He is an Associate Editor of IMA Journal of Management Mathematics and Guest Editor to several special issues of journals including Journal of Operational Research Society, Annals of Operations Research, Journal of Medical Systems, and International Journal of Energy Management Sector. He is in the editorial board of several international journals and co-founder of Performance Improvement Management Software.

William Ho is a Senior Lecturer at the Aston University Business School. Before joining Aston in 2005, he had worked as a Research Associate in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. His research interests include supply chain management, production and operations management, and operations research. He has published extensively in various international journals like Computers & Operations Research, Engineering Applications of Artificial Intelligence, European Journal of Operational Research, Expert Systems with Applications, International Journal of Production Economics, International Journal of Production Research, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, and so on. His first authored book was published in 2006. He is an Editorial Board member of the International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology and an Associate Editor of the OR Insight Journal. Currently, he is a Scholar of the Advanced Institute of Management Research.

Uses of frontier efficiency methodologies and multi-criteria decision making for performance measurement in the energy sector

This special issue aims to focus on holistic, applied research on performance measurement in energy sector management and for publication of relevant applied research to bridge the gap between industry and academia. After a rigorous refereeing process, seven papers were included in this special issue.

The volume opens with five data envelopment analysis (DEA)-based papers. Wu et al. apply the DEA-based Malmquist index to evaluate the changes in relative efficiency and the total factor productivity of coal-fired electricity generation of 30 Chinese administrative regions from 1999 to 2007. Factors considered in the model include fuel consumption, labor, capital, sulphur dioxide emissions, and electricity generated. The authors reveal that the east provinces were relatively and technically more efficient, whereas the west provinces had the highest growth rate in the period studied.

Ioannis E. Tsolas applies the DEA approach to assess the performance of Greek fossil fuel-fired power stations taking undesirable outputs into consideration, such as carbon dioxide and sulphur dioxide emissions. In addition, the bootstrapping approach is deployed to address the uncertainty surrounding DEA point estimates, and provide bias-corrected estimations and confidence intervals for the point estimates. The author revealed from the sample that the non-lignite-fired stations are on an average more efficient than the lignite-fired stations.

Maethee Mekaroonreung and Andrew L. Johnson compare the relative performance of three DEA-based measures, which estimate production frontiers and evaluate the relative efficiency of 113 US petroleum refineries while considering undesirable outputs. Three inputs (capital, energy consumption, and crude oil consumption), two desirable outputs (gasoline and distillate generation), and an undesirable output (toxic release) are considered in the DEA models. The authors discover that refineries in the Rocky Mountain region performed the best, and about 60 percent of oil refineries in the sample could improve their efficiencies further.

H. Omrani, A. Azadeh, S. F. Ghaderi, and S. Abdollahzadeh presented an integrated approach, combining DEA, corrected ordinary least squares (COLS), and principal component analysis (PCA) methods, to calculate the relative efficiency scores of 26 Iranian electricity distribution units from 2003 to 2006. Specifically, both DEA and COLS are used to check three internal consistency conditions, whereas PCA is used to verify and validate the final ranking results of either DEA (consistency) or DEA-COLS (non-consistency). Three inputs (network length, transformer capacity, and number of employees) and two outputs (number of customers and total electricity sales) are considered in the model.

Virendra Ajodhia applied three DEA-based models to evaluate the relative performance of 20 electricity distribution firms from the UK and the Netherlands. The first model is a traditional DEA model for analyzing cost-only efficiency. The second model includes (inverse) quality by modelling total customer minutes lost as an input data. The third model is based on the idea of using total social costs, including the firm’s private costs and the interruption costs incurred by consumers, as an input. Both energy-delivered and number of consumers are treated as the outputs in the models.

After five DEA papers, Stelios Grafakos, Alexandros Flamos, Vlasis Oikonomou, and D. Zevgolis presented a multiple criteria analysis weighting approach to evaluate the energy and climate policy. The proposed approach is akin to the analytic hierarchy process, which consists of pairwise comparisons, consistency verification, and criteria prioritization. In the approach, stakeholders and experts in the energy policy field are incorporated in the evaluation process by providing an interactive mean with verbal, numerical, and visual representation of their preferences. A total of 14 evaluation criteria were considered and classified into four objectives, such as climate change mitigation, energy effectiveness, socioeconomic, and competitiveness and technology.

Finally, Borge Hess applied the stochastic frontier analysis approach to analyze the impact of various business strategies, including acquisition, holding structures, and joint ventures, on a firm’s efficiency within a sample of 47 natural gas transmission pipelines in the USA from 1996 to 2005. The author finds that there were no significant changes in the firm’s efficiency by an acquisition, and there is a weak evidence for efficiency improvements caused by the new shareholder. Besides, the author discovers that parent companies appear not to influence a subsidiary’s efficiency positively. In addition, the analysis shows a negative impact of a joint venture on technical efficiency of the pipeline company.

To conclude, we are grateful to all the authors for their contribution, and all the reviewers for their constructive comments, which made this special issue possible. We hope that this issue would contribute significantly to performance improvement of the energy sector.

Ali Emrouznejad, William HoGuest Editors

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