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  A measure of output relative to input, usually expressed as the ratio of the returns from sales to the costs of production. The term was developed in analyses of the efficiency of manufacturing industry, where it is equivalent to the rate of surplus value or rate of exploitation in Marxian economics. The higher the amount of value-added in the production process relative to the costs incurred (of labour, materials and fixed capital), the greater the productivity. In primary industries, however, productivity usually implies the ratio of production per unit area of land rather than to its (imputed) cost.

With the growth of service industries in advanced capitalist societies, attempts have been made to measure productivity in sectors other than manufacturing — not least in higher education! — though the concept of value added is not readily applied in many such situations. (RJJ)



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Other Terms : Gastarbeiter | principal components analysis (pca) | GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade)
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