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Measuring technology inequality across African countries using the concept of efficiency Gini coefficient

Jingjing Qu (), Aijun Li () and Morié Guy-Roland N’Drin ()
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Jingjing Qu: Shandong University
Aijun Li: Shandong University
Morié Guy-Roland N’Drin: Shandong University

Environment, Development and Sustainability: A Multidisciplinary Approach to the Theory and Practice of Sustainable Development, 2023, vol. 25, issue 5, No 12, 4107-4138

Abstract: Abstract In the context of global climate change, much hope is placed in technological progress's ability to address environmental problems. However, the persistence of technology inequality across countries undermines environmental technology innovation’s contribution to environmental issues. In such a context, this paper introduces a new approach that combines Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) with the Gini coefficient to gauge technology inequality. Additionally, decomposition analysis is adopted to identify the driving factors affecting technology diffusion. Empirically, the proposed approach is applied to 49 African countries from 2000 to 2017. The results of our study show that, although the unified efficiency of African countries improved slightly during the study period, there is still much room for improvement in terms of economic prosperity and environmental performance. Secondly, there is group heterogeneity between two groups of African countries (low-efficiency group and high-efficiency group) under both managerial and natural disposability. Thirdly, the inequality decomposition revealed that cross-group inequality is the source of group heterogeneity and the main barrier to technology diffusion, followed by within-group inequality. Finally, environmental technology progress exhibits a low contribution to enhancing sustainability in Africa due to technological inequality persistence. In future, it would be quite meaningful to perform sector-level analysis, which could provide more detailed information on sustainability.

Keywords: Data envelopment analysis; Intermediate approach; Technology inequality; Efficiency gini coefficient; Index decomposition analysis; Africa (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2023
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DOI: 10.1007/s10668-022-02236-3

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