(redirected from Variable returns to scale) Also found in: Acronyms.
returns to scale
the relationship between OUTPUT of a product and the quantities of FACTOR INPUTS used to produce it in the LONG RUN. Where, for example, doubling the quantity of factor inputs used results in a doubling of output then constant returns to scale’ are experienced. Where ECONOMIES OF SCALE are present, a doubling of factor inputs results in a more than proportionate increase in output. By contrast, where DISECONOMIES OF SCALE are encountered, a doubling of factor inputs results in a less than proportionate increase in output.