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Envy-Freeness and Distributive Justice

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  • Arnsperger, Christian
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    Abstract

    The criterion of envy-freeness, according to which no agent should prefer any of his neighbours' allocation to his own, has become a central part of the economic theory of distributive justice. It essentially corresponds to the need to express an ideal of equality in societies where preferences and endowments are heterogeneous. This paper surveys various formulations of the idea of envy-freeness, starting with the simple distribution model, then adding the possibility for agents to have different native talent endowments, and finally moving to models with production. Many classical results are displayed, but emphasis is also put on recent developments, mainly the ideas of "minimizing envy" and of "absence of domination". Five major difficulties facing envy-freeness are identified and listed as directions of future research. Copyright 1994 by Blackwell Publishers Ltd

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Journal of Economic Surveys.

    Volume (Year): 8 (1994)
    Issue (Month): 2 (June)
    Pages: 155-86

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    Handle: RePEc:bla:jecsur:v:8:y:1994:i:2:p:155-86

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    Web page: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=0950-0804

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    Cited by:
    1. Corchon, Luis C. & Iturbe-Ormaetxe, Inigo, 2001. "A Proposal to Unify Some Concepts in the Theory of Fairness," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 101(2), pages 540-571, December.
    2. Marco Grasso, 2004. "A Normative Framework of Justice in Climate Change," Working Papers 79, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Jul 2004.
    3. Yukihiro Nishimura, 2008. "Envy Minimization in the Optimal Tax Context," Working Papers 1178, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
    4. Nishimura, Yukihiro, 2003. "Optimal non-linear income taxation for reduction of envy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 363-386, February.
    5. Frank A Cowell & Udo Ebert, 2006. "Inequality and Envy," STICERD - Distributional Analysis Research Programme Papers 88, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.

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