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This paper employs a two-stage Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) to estimate technical efficiency in secondary education and health for 59 and 73 countries, respectively, using data from 2018. The analysis tackles important issues, such as the incidence of outliers and the incorporation of non-discretionary variables. Although other papers use monetary figures (e.g., expenditures) as inputs due to the difficulty of accessing physical units, we avoid this practice due to the risk it entails, such as neglecting the incidence of different cost structures in the outcomes associated with the implementation of financial resources; additionally, there are relatively few publications on efficiency that include more than one sector. According to the study, the technical output-oriented efficiency in the health sector is higher than in the education sector, with efficiency indices of 0.995 and 0.887, respectively. Likewise, it is observed that the countries that obtain greater output quantities are also the most efficient in each sector, not necessarily those that use fewer inputs.

Víctor Mauricio Castañeda-Rodríguez, Universidad Nacional de Colombia

Professor, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Bogotá, Colombia. Public Accountant, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Doctor in Economic Sciences, Universidad Nacional de Colombia.

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Received 2023-06-21
Accepted 2024-04-29
Published 2024-04-29