Flexible measures in production process: a DEA-based approach

Alireza Amirteimoori, Ali Emrouznejad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Data envelopment analysis (DEA) has been proven as an excellent data-oriented efficiency analysis method for comparing decision making units (DMUs) with multiple inputs and multiple outputs. In conventional DEA, it is assumed that the status of each measure is clearly known as either input or output. However, in some situations, a performance measure can play input role for some DMUs and output role for others. Cook and Zhu [Eur. J. Oper. Res. 180 (2007) 692–699] referred to these variables as flexible measures. The paper proposes an alternative model in which each flexible measure is treated as either input or output variable to maximize the technical efficiency of the DMU under evaluation. The main focus of this paper is on the impact that the flexible measures has on the definition of the PPS and the assessment of technical efficiency. An example in UK higher education intuitions shows applicability of the proposed approach.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-74
Number of pages12
JournalRAIRO - operations research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2011

Bibliographical note

The original publication is available at www.rairo-ro.org


  • data envelopment analysis
  • efficiency
  • flexible measure


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