Data envelopment analysis

Assessment of academic departments efficiency using data envelopment analysis, Higher education is the backbone of development and economic growth in any country. Given that the academic institutions are responsible for the capacity building required for a country’s long-term plans, the educational system in particular, is one of the pillars a country depends on to increase its productivity and thus efficiently implement its strategic plans. There is no doubt that an efficient system of institutions of higher education is crucial to providing the necessary profession manpower of scientists, engineers, doctors, and teachers. Therefore, there is a need to assess the efficiency of the educational institutions, and whether the high cost being spent on them is worthwhile. Further, it is necessary to have standards by which all educational institutions could be questioned through the evaluation of efficiency of using resources (Inputs) and achieving the goals (Outputs) for which these resources were spent. From 1948 to 1967, there were no higher education institutions in Gaza Strip, therefore most of Gazan students used to study at Egyptian universities without any obstacles. After Gaza Strip was occupied in 1967, Gazans found great difficulties in sending their sons and daughters to study abroad. Hence, the idea of establishing the Islamic University was coined. The Islamic University in Gaza (IUG) was established in 1978. Till 1991, the Islamic University was the sole university in Gaza Strip. It started with three faculties:Faculty of Shariah (Islamic Law), Faculty of Ussoul Eldeen (religious foundation), and the Faculty of Arabic language, which later became the Faculty of Arts. Due to the need of Palestinian society for other disciplines, Faculty of Education, Faculty of Commerce and Faculty of Sciences were established in 1980. In 1991, the Faculty of Engineering was established, and at the beginning of the academic year 1992-1993, the Faculty of Nursing was established and the Faculty of medicine witnessed its birth at the beginning of the academic year 2006-2007. Throughout those years, IUG witnessed a remarkable growth in its academic and administrative staff, as well as in its students and graduates. This growth was associated with the expanding of its facilities, units, laboratories and services in the field of scientific research, community development, in addition to its national, regional and international relations. Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) is a relatively new data-oriented approach for evaluating the technical efficiency of a set of peer entities called Decision Making Units (DMUs). DEA provides a single measure and easily deals with multiple inputs and multiple outputs. Since the DEA technique was first developed, it has been widely applied to industries asdiverse as health care (Bhat,Verma,& Reuben, 2001; Jacobs,Smith, &Street, 2006), Banking (Hassan &Sanchez, 2007), and transportation (Pathomsiri, 2006) and many other industries and organizations. Further, DEA-approach has proved especially valuable in cases where we have non-marketed inputs or outputs and/or cannot be derived or agreed upon among different DMUs. In this study, DEA is used to assess the efficiencies of the academic departments (DMUs) at IUG.

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