A vast amount of literature is devoted to analyzing the effects of deregulating and restructuring measures in the European railway sector and the results are not totally unambiguous. The contribution of this paper to the existing literature is twofold. Firstly, we estimate efficiency levels derived from two alternative approaches: a non-parametric DEA analysis and a parametric stochastic frontier production.
Using two different approaches allows us to test if the heterogeneous results obtained in the literature are due to the different approaches used to measure efficiency. Secondly, we update the sample introducing a data panel with information on 23 national rail systems, and covering data from 2001 to 2008. It is fundamental to use extended and updated data covering the more recent period and more countries, given that most deregulation measures have been implemented in the last few years.