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Open Access
Article
Publication date: 2 December 2016

Juan Aparicio

The purpose of this paper is to provide an outline of the major contributions in the literature on the determination of the least distance in data envelopment analysis…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide an outline of the major contributions in the literature on the determination of the least distance in data envelopment analysis (DEA). The focus herein is primarily on methodological developments. Specifically, attention is mainly paid to modeling aspects, computational features, the satisfaction of properties and duality. Finally, some promising avenues of future research on this topic are stated.

Design/methodology/approach

DEA is a methodology based on mathematical programming for the assessment of relative efficiency of a set of decision-making units (DMUs) that use several inputs to produce several outputs. DEA is classified in the literature as a non-parametric method because it does not assume a particular functional form for the underlying production function and presents, in this sense, some outstanding properties: the efficiency of firms may be evaluated independently on the market prices of the inputs used and outputs produced; it may be easily used with multiple inputs and outputs; a single score of efficiency for each assessed organization is obtained; this technique ranks organizations based on relative efficiency; and finally, it yields benchmarking information. DEA models provide both benchmarking information and efficiency scores for each of the evaluated units when it is applied to a dataset of observations and variables (inputs and outputs). Without a doubt, this benchmarking information gives DEA a distinct advantage over other efficiency methodologies, such as stochastic frontier analysis (SFA). Technical inefficiency is typically measured in DEA as the distance between the observed unit and a “benchmarking” target on the estimated piece-wise linear efficient frontier. The choice of this target is critical for assessing the potential performance of each DMU in the sample, as well as for providing information on how to increase its performance. However, traditional DEA models yield targets that are determined by the “furthest” efficient projection to the evaluated DMU. The projected point on the efficient frontier obtained as such may not be a representative projection for the judged unit, and consequently, some authors in the literature have suggested determining closest targets instead. The general argument behind this idea is that closer targets suggest directions of enhancement for the inputs and outputs of the inefficient units that may lead them to the efficiency with less effort. Indeed, authors like Aparicio et al. (2007) have shown, in an application on airlines, that it is possible to find substantial differences between the targets provided by applying the criterion used by the traditional DEA models, and those obtained when the criterion of closeness is utilized for determining projection points on the efficient frontier. The determination of closest targets is connected to the calculation of the least distance from the evaluated unit to the efficient frontier of the reference technology. In fact, the former is usually computed through solving mathematical programming models associated with minimizing some type of distance (e.g. Euclidean). In this particular respect, the main contribution in the literature is the paper by Briec (1998) on Hölder distance functions, where formally technical inefficiency to the “weakly” efficient frontier is defined through mathematical distances.

Findings

All the interesting features of the determination of closest targets from a benchmarking point of view have generated, in recent times, the increasing interest of researchers in the calculation of the least distance to evaluate technical inefficiency (Aparicio et al., 2014a). So, in this paper, we present a general classification of published contributions, mainly from a methodological perspective, and additionally, we indicate avenues for further research on this topic. The approaches that we cite in this paper differ in the way that the idea of similarity is made operative. Similarity is, in this sense, implemented as the closeness between the values of the inputs and/or outputs of the assessed units and those of the obtained projections on the frontier of the reference production possibility set. Similarity may be measured through multiple distances and efficiency measures. In turn, the aim is to globally minimize DEA model slacks to determine the closest efficient targets. However, as we will show later in the text, minimizing a mathematical distance in DEA is not an easy task, as it is equivalent to minimizing the distance to the complement of a polyhedral set, which is not a convex set. This complexity will justify the existence of different alternatives for solving these types of models.

Originality/value

As we are aware, this is the first survey in this topic.

Details

Journal of Centrum Cathedra, vol. 9 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1851-6599

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2002

Enrique Claver, Reyes González, José Gascó and Juan Llopis

The aim of this paper is to determine the main reasons that lead to information systems outsourcing, the reservations that are initially present in front of this kind of…

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5010

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to determine the main reasons that lead to information systems outsourcing, the reservations that are initially present in front of this kind of contract and the factors considered necessary for the success of outsourcing in the case of Spanish public universities. With this aim, a survey has been made among information systems managers in those universities. The results show the possibility of establishing a typology of universities depending on the position they have adopted with respect to outsourcing.

Details

Logistics Information Management, vol. 15 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-6053

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 2 December 2016

Vincent Charles and Rajiv D. Banker

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216

Abstract

Details

Journal of Centrum Cathedra, vol. 9 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1851-6599

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Article
Publication date: 9 October 2017

Enrique Orduña-Malea, Juan M. Ayllón, Alberto Martín-Martín and Emilio Delgado López-Cózar

Google Scholar Citations (GSC) provides an institutional affiliation link which groups together authors who belong to the same institution. The purpose of this paper is to…

Abstract

Purpose

Google Scholar Citations (GSC) provides an institutional affiliation link which groups together authors who belong to the same institution. The purpose of this paper is to ascertain whether this feature is able to identify and normalize all the institutions entered by the authors, and whether it is able to assign all researchers to their own institution correctly.

Design/methodology/approach

Systematic queries to GSC’s internal search box were performed under two different forms (institution name and institutional e-mail web domain) in September 2015. The whole Spanish academic system (82 institutions) was used as a test. Additionally, specific searches to companies (Google) and world-class universities were performed to identify and classify potential errors in the functioning of the feature.

Findings

Although the affiliation tool works well for most institutions, it is unable to detect all existing institutions in the database, and it is not always able to create a unique standardized entry for each institution. Additionally, it also fails to group all the authors who belong to the same institution. A wide variety of errors have been identified and classified.

Research limitations/implications

Even though the analyzed sample is good enough to empirically answer the research questions initially proposed, a more comprehensive study should be performed to calibrate the real volume of the errors.

Practical implications

The discovered affiliation link errors prevent institutions from being able to access the profiles of all their respective authors using the institutions lists offered by GSC. Additionally, it introduces a shortcoming in the navigation features of Google Scholar which may impair web user experience.

Social implications

Some institutions (mainly universities) are under-represented in the affiliation feature provided by GSC. This fact might jeopardize the visibility of institutions as well as the use of this feature in bibliometric or webometric analyses.

Originality/value

This work proves inconsistencies in the affiliation feature provided by GSC. A whole national university system is systematically analyzed and several queries have been used to reveal errors in its functioning. The completeness of the errors identified and the empirical data examined are the most exhaustive to date regarding this topic. Finally, some recommendations about how to correctly fill in the affiliation data (both for authors and institutions) and how to improve this feature are provided as well.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 41 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2018

Juan Guio, Álvaro Choi and Josep-Oriol Escardíbul

The purpose of this paper is to provide a better understanding of the links between labor market conditions and academic performance by disentangling the effects of…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a better understanding of the links between labor market conditions and academic performance by disentangling the effects of unemployment. The contribution of this study is, therefore, threefold: first, it provides new evidence on the link between labor market conditions and educational decisions; second, it quantifies separately the two separate effects of unemployment on academic performance at age 15; and third, it analyses heterogeneous effects of the “family” and “local labor market” – proxied through the unemployment rate of the school community – effects.

Design/methodology/approach

The analysis of the impact of unemployment on academic performance is performed through hierarchical linear regressions.

Findings

The results show that academic performance at age 15 is affected by labor market conditions, and, at the same time, previous performance determines future educational decisions. Thus, these results highlight the sensitivity of students’ educational decisions and academic performance to shifts in the labor market.

Practical implications

This suggests that strategies aimed at reducing early school dropout rates should not be restricted solely to the education system. In other words, school failure is not only dependent on schools and, hence, on education policies.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the existing literature by providing new evidence on the relationship between short-term labor market dynamics and academic performance. More specifically, this paper represents a significant step forward in comparison to the previous literature as it has provided responses to three key questions faced by countries with high unemployment and high early school dropout.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 39 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 4 September 2018

Juan Luis Osa, Naiara Ortega, Gorka Vidal, Borja Fernandez-Gauna, Asier Carballo and Ibon Tolosa

The granular structure of a grinding wheel determines its performance remarkably when grinding. Nowadays, grinding wheels are man-made porous conglomerates of hard…

Abstract

Purpose

The granular structure of a grinding wheel determines its performance remarkably when grinding. Nowadays, grinding wheels are man-made porous conglomerates of hard abrasive grains bonded with a binder. As an engineered material, it would be interesting to foresee the behaviour of the wheel, but it is hindered under its complex heterogeneous nature. Recently, some models based on the discrete element method (DEM) have been presented to model the grinding wheel. This paper aims to identify and propose a framework that must comply with such models and to identify new applications for DEM models in grinding.

Design/methodology/approach

First, the characteristics of the grinding wheel are described. In this way, the framework of DEM models of a grinding wheel material is developed, reproducing both the granular morphology and stiffness.

Findings

The paper asserts a promising future that provides the DEM in the modelling of grinding.

Originality/value

The potential of DEM in grinding is analysed, proposing new applications. It can be used as topography model, which can also model the stiffness. In addition, DEM opens a new interesting research line: the modelling of the grit breakout. It draws up the development of essential dressing and wear models.

Details

Engineering Computations, vol. 35 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0264-4401

Keywords

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Expert briefing
Publication date: 23 October 2018

Women in politics.

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DOI: 10.1108/OXAN-DB239366

ISSN: 2633-304X

Keywords

Geographic
Topical
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Abstract

Details

Historical Development of Teacher Education in Chile
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-529-1

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1996

Margaret Y. Champion

Can we do business with strangers? A major handicap to any promotion is ignorance of the market and its members. In order to understand Latin Americans, says Albert…

Abstract

Can we do business with strangers? A major handicap to any promotion is ignorance of the market and its members. In order to understand Latin Americans, says Albert Hirschman, we must first understand how Latin Americans understand each other. We see the “facts” one way, but their perception of these same facts is often very different. This is my purpose in reporting on Peru's attitude and internal discussions on international trade. Why Peru? A U S. State Department official told me that they consider Peru as a sort of bell wether in South America. Abraham Lowenthal of the Inter‐American Dialog says Peru has an international significance greater than would be expected, considering the size of its economy, and E. V. K. Fitzgerald of Cambridge says the Peruvian experience is significant in judgimg prospects in South America.

Details

International Journal of Commerce and Management, vol. 6 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1056-9219

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2002

Enrique Claver, Reyes González, José Gascó and Juan Llopis

Information systems outsourcing is a constantly growing practice in all sorts of organisations. This paper analyses the level of information systems outsourcing at Spanish…

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1645

Abstract

Information systems outsourcing is a constantly growing practice in all sorts of organisations. This paper analyses the level of information systems outsourcing at Spanish public universities. It also means to determine if factors such as the size, both of universities and of their information systems departments, as well as the degree of involvement of rector’s and general manager’s teams in matters related to information technologies can have an influence on the outsourcing level. With this aim, a survey has been made among the information systems managers in all the universities under examination.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 16 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

Keywords

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