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Working paper

THE RUSSIAN EXCELLENCE INITIATIVE FOR HIGHER EDUCATION: AN ECONOMETRIC EVALUATION OF SHORT-TERM RESULTS WP BRP 201/EC/2018

This research studies the short-term effects of the Russian Excellence Initiative Project 5to100 on participating universities. To trace the effect, we develop a quasi-experimental econometric methodology. A control group of universities comparable to the Project 5to100 universities at the starting point of the program’s implementation was singled out using propensity score matching. Data envelopment analysis was conducted, and the Malmquist productivity index was calculated to trace how and why the efficiency of the “participants” and “non-participants” of the Project 5to100 has changed due to the project. We also investigate the direct impact of the policy on the research productivity of universities, using the average treatment effect, and difference-in-difference approaches. The final step consists of an explanatory analysis of the factors apart from the policy potentially affecting efficiency scores. We find statistically significant positive effects of the policy both on the productivity and on the efficiency of the participating universities.