A modified DEA model to estimate the importance of objectives with an application to agricultural economics

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This paper demonstrates a connection between data envelopment analysis (DEA) and a non-interactive elicitation method to estimate the weights of objectives for decision-makers in a multiple attribute approach. This connection gives rise to a modified DEA model that allows us to estimate not only efficiency measures but also preference weights by radially projecting each unit onto a linear combination of the elements of the payoff matrix (which is obtained by standard multicriteria methods). For users of multiple attribute decision analysis the basic contribution of this paper is a new interpretation in terms of efficiency of the non-interactive methodology employed to estimate weights in a multicriteria approach. We also propose a modified procedure to calculate an efficient payoff matrix and a procedure to estimate weights through a radial projection rather than a distance minimization. For DEA users, we provide a modified DEA procedure to calculate preference weights and efficiency measures that does not depend on any observations in the dataset. This methodology has been applied to an agricultural case study in Spain.
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