Scale and scope economies of Japanese private universities revisited with an input distance function approach

Jiro Nemoto, Noriko Furumatsu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)


This paper examines the scale and scope economies of higher education institutions in Japan assuming the presence of productive inefficiency. The standard approach to testing the scope economies is to apply the cost function. However, the cost function approach often entails the difficulty of obtaining reliable data on input prices, especially the input prices of capital for higher education institutions. This paper proposes a duality approach based on the input distance function. The scope economies are tested under a necessary and sufficient condition by retrieving the costs of joint and separate production from the input distance function. We apply the testing procedure to data pertaining to 218 Japanese private universities in 1999 and 2004. The results indicate the scale economies and the scope diseconomies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-226
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Productivity Analysis
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2014



  • Higher education cost
  • Input distance function
  • Scale economies
  • Scope economies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics

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