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Macmillan Higher Education Palgrave Higher Education

The Economics of Benchmarking

Measuring Performance for Competitive Advantage

ISBN 9780230224384
Publication Date December 2008
Formats Hardcover 
Publisher Palgrave

For businesses seeking to gain the edge over their competitors, benchmarking is an increasingly popular tool used to compare operations and performance. ten Raa elegantly presents the techniques and theory to explain how performance indices and rankings are developed and how they can be used to improve efficiency, productivity and profitability.

Thijs ten Raa has been affiliated with NYU and Erasmus University and is now Associate Professor of Economics at Tilburg University, The Netherlands. He has published eight books, and numerous articles. In 2006 he was awarded the Wassily Leontief Centennial Medal.

What is Benchmarking and Why is it Useful?
Linear Programming in one Lesson
The Technique of Benchmarking
Case study 1: Spanish Restaurants
Case study 2: Indian Banks
Case study 3: Korean Quality Management
Case study 4: Austrian Banking Deregulation
Efficiency, Productivity and Profitability
Case study 5: U.S. Manufacturing
Case study 6: U.S. Hotels
Case study 7: European Railways Efficiency
Case study 8: Dutch Economics and Business Schools
Returns to Scale
Case study 9: U.S. Real Estate Investment Trusts
Case study 10: European Railways Returns to Scale
Concluding Remarks.


Many people in business talk about benchmarking. This book provides techniques that actually enable you to do it'. - John Kay, author of The Truth about Markets
'This elegant book shows how to measure the relative operational efficiency of enterprises. It provides both theoretical guidance and practical examples of techniques that can help identify underperforming and overperforming groups in your organization. Anyone interested in performance evaluation will want to read this book.' – Hal Varian, Professor of Economics, Business and Information, University of California at Berkeley, USA
'This is a smart and delightful way of showing the theoretical underpinning of data envelopment analysis. Experts in linear programming and aficionados of Data Envelopment Analysis as well as the brightest of students will love this short book for the elegance and purity of its reasoning.' - Tom Weyman-Jones, Loughborough University
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