Measuring Efficiency at the Regional Level: A Data Envelopment Analysis Approach
European countries have been continuously under the pressure to improve public balances and efficiency of public spending. Economic crisis which started during 2007 weakened public finances at the state and local level in countries all over the world. In Croatia local government budgets are still below the pre-crisis level in many local government units. This paper empirically examines efficiency of public expenditures at the regional level. Performance has been investigated by developing a composite indicator of output. Spending efficiency at the regional level was analysed using Data Envelopment Analysis methodology. Results suggest that there are large differences at the regional level in using resources to provide public services. The results show that the local government units in the least efficient county should on average decrease their expenses by 55 percent, while achieving the same performance to become efficient.
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