|In Memory of W.W. Cooper
We first met Professor W.W. Cooper in beautiful Newark, New Jersey, probably in the early 1980s. We were attending a cross-disciplinary conference on â€˜Cur- rent Issues in Productivityâ€™ organized by Ali Dogramaci. That was our first formal introduction to DEA. We were interested but also curious about how DEA was related to the earlier work by Professor R.W. Shephard and others working in the area of activity analysis and linear programming.
We of course noticed the obvious superficial relationshipsâ€”distance functions come to mind which were mentioned in the original CCR paper. But we knew there had to be a deeper connection between the CCR School and the Shephard School. This took us quite some time; in 2002 we published â€˜Two Perspectives on DEA: Unveiling the Link between CCR and Shephard,â€™ which appeared in Journal of Productivity Analysis. There we showed that by appropriately normalizing Shephardâ€™s (dual) output price model, the two schools coincide.
Over the several decades since we first met â€˜W.W.â€™ as we referred to him, we have had many exciting and fruitful discussions, although we didnâ€™t always agree with his approach. Some of these issues included non-Archimedeans, slacks, congestion, disposability and treatment of undesirable outputs. Rather than rejecting each others papers, W.W. introduced the idea of â€˜publishing the referee reportsâ€™, allowing the reader to see the various views of these issues side by side. This is a reflection of his academic curiosity and open-mindedness.
To show our appreciation of his work and efforts to be inclusive of other views, we dedicated our book Intertemporal Production Frontiers: with dynamic DEA to him. We will miss him.
Rolf Fare & Shawna Grosskopf, USA