Total factor productivity measurement with carbon reduction

Xiancun Hu, Chunlu Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to present an approach for productivity measurement that considers both construction growth and carbon reduction. Design/methodology/approach - The approach applied is a sequential Malmquist-Luenberger productivity analysis based on a directional distance function and sequential benchmark technology using the data envelopment analysis (DEA) technique. The sequential Malmquist-Luenberger productivity change index is decomposed into pure technical efficiency, scale efficiency, and technological change indices, in order to investigate the driving forces for productivity change. Findings - The construction industries of the Australian states and territories were selected implement the new approach. The results indicate that construction growth and carbon reduction can be achieved simultaneously through the learning of techniques from benchmarks. Practical implications - Current research on total factor productivity (TFP) in construction generally neglects carbon emissions. This does not accurately depict the nature of construction and therefore yields biased estimation results. TFP measurement should consider carbon reduction, which is beneficial for policymakers to promote sustainable productivity development in the construction industry. Originality/value - The approach developed here is generic and enhances productivity and DEA research levels in construction. This research can be used to formulate policies for evaluating performance in worldwide construction projects, organizations and industries by considering undesirable outputs and desirable outputs simultaneously, and for promoting sustainable development in construction by identifying competitiveness factors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)575-592
Number of pages18
JournalEngineering, Construction and Architectural Management
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017
Externally publishedYes


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