Eurasian Business Review

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 37–54 | Cite as

Approaching effects of the economic crisis on university efficiency: a comparative study of Germany and Italy

  • Erik E. Lehmann
  • Michele Meoli
  • Stefano Paleari
  • Sarah A. E. StockingerEmail author
S.I. : Comparative entrepreneurship


In this paper, we compare the efficiency of the Italian and German universities in the process of transforming public funding into the multiple outputs of a university, i.e. graduating students, publishing research, and patenting activity. We do this with a particular focus on the policies implemented following the financial crisis in 2008. Using a sample of 133 public universities, of which 73 public universities in Germany and 60 public universities in Italy observed over the period 2006–2011 we find that Italian universities perform significantly better in terms of output maximization than German universities. The crisis does not show a general impact, while the treatment effect indicates that Italian universities coped better during the crisis than their German counterparts at a highly significant level.


Higher education Economic crisis Governance Data envelopment analysis Scale efficiency 

JEL Classification

H11 H12 I2 N30 


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Copyright information

© Eurasia Business and Economics Society 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Erik E. Lehmann
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
  • Michele Meoli
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
  • Stefano Paleari
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
  • Sarah A. E. Stockinger
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
    Email author
  1. 1.Chair of Management and OrganizationUniversity of AugsburgAugsburgGermany
  2. 2.University of BergamoDalmineItaly
  3. 3.CISAlpino Institute for Comparative Studies in Europe, CCSEDalmineItaly
  4. 4.CISAlpino Institute for Comparative Studies in Europe, CCSEAugsburgGermany

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