Gemeindegröße, Verwaltungsform und Effizienz der kommunalen Leistungserstellung – Das Beispiel Sachsen-Anhalt
Municipality Size, Institutions and Efficiency of Municipal Service Provision: The Case of Saxony-Anhalt In this contribution we analyze the determinants of the efficiency of municipal service provision using the example of the German state of Saxony-Anhalt. The focus lies on the effects of municipality size, institutional setting and spatial or demographic factors. We perform a non-parametric efficiency estimation (Data Envelopment Analysis and the Convex-order-m approach by Daraio and Simar). In contrast to previous studies, we choose the aggregate budget of municipal associations as the object of our analysis since important competences are settled at the joint administrative level. The results show that municipal associations do not necessarily have to be less efficient than independent municipalities. Furthermore, the results for scale efficiency indicate that most municipalities of Saxony-Anhalt had a sufficiently efficient “firm size” in 2004. Moreover, demographic factors and settlement structures have a significant effect on the technical efficiency of towns and municipalities: While a higher population density might be, to some extent, efficiency-enhancing, an increasing share of senior citizens or population growth might have the opposite effect. The integration of spatial interdependencies in efficiency estimations is a complex problem that has only been solved insufficiently yet. However, the estimation results for Moran’s I show mostly statistically significant but, nevertheless, only little or moderate relationships between the single inputs and outputs. Hence, there is no cause for concern about a substantial bias in the results if we neglect spatial interrelationships in our calculation. Furthermore, we found no evidence that the surrounding municipalities benefit from their proximity to core cities by increased efficiency.