The social science research performance of Chinese universities is examined using panel data. The universities are found to be very inefficient in general, with not much difference between regions. By far the largest single cause of universities' overall technical efficiency is pure technical efficiency, along with a considerable amount of scale inefficiency and a modest amount of congestion. No obvious regional differences in the universities' productivity growth are apparent between 1998 and 2002. Decomposition of the Malmquist productivity index indicates that although there has been technological progress over the years, poor scale efficiency and technical efficiency have resulted in deterioration in the universities' average productivity. There are signs of increasing congestion during the period studied.Technical efficiency Congestion Malmquist productivity index Research Chinese universities
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