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An analysis of the German university admissions system

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  • Alexander Westkamp

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    Abstract

    This paper analyzes the sequential admissions procedure for medical subjects at public universities in Germany. Complete information equilibrium outcomes are shown to be characterized by a stability condition that is adapted to the institutional constraints of the German system. I introduce matching problems with complex constraints and the notion of procedural stability. Two simple assumptions guarantee existence of a student optimal procedurally stable matching mechanism that is strategyproof for students. In the context of the German admissions problem, this mechanism weakly Pareto dominates all equilibrium outcomes of the currently employed procedure. Applications to school choice with affirmative action are also discussed. Copyright Springer-Verlag 2013

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s00199-012-0704-4
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Springer in its journal Economic Theory.

    Volume (Year): 53 (2013)
    Issue (Month): 3 (August)
    Pages: 561-589

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    Handle: RePEc:spr:joecth:v:53:y:2013:i:3:p:561-589

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    Related research

    Keywords: University admissions; Matching; Stability; Strategyproofness; Complex constraints; C78; D02;

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    1. Lars Ehlers & Isa Hafalir & Bumin Yenmez & Muhammed Yildirim, 2011. "School Choice with Controlled Choice Constraints: Hard Bounds versus Soft Bounds," GSIA Working Papers 2012-E20, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
    2. Roth, Alvin E., 1985. "The college admissions problem is not equivalent to the marriage problem," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 277-288, August.
    3. Joana Pais, 2006. "Random Matching in the College Admissions Problem," Working Papers Department of Economics 2006/13, ISEG - School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, University of Lisbon.
    4. Haluk Ergin & Tayfun Sönmez, 2005. "Games of School Choice under the Boston Mechanism," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 619, Boston College Department of Economics.
    5. Claus-Jochen Haake & Bettina Klaus, 2009. "Monotonicity and Nash implementation in matching markets with contracts," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 41(3), pages 393-410, December.
    6. Yenmez, M. Bumin & Yildirim, Muhammed Ali & Hafalir, Isa Emin, 2013. "Effective affirmative action in school choice," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 8(2), May.
    7. Hatfield, John William & Kojima, Fuhito, 2009. "Group incentive compatibility for matching with contracts," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 745-749, November.
    8. Atila Abdulkadiroglu & Tayfun Sönmez, 2003. "School Choice: A Mechanism Design Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(3), pages 729-747, June.
    9. Clayton Featherstone & Muriel Niederle, 2008. "Ex Ante Efficiency in School Choice Mechanisms: An Experimental Investigation," NBER Working Papers 14618, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. John William Hatfield & Fuhito Kojima, 2008. "Matching with Contracts: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 1189-94, June.
    11. Balinski, Michel & Sonmez, Tayfun, 1999. "A Tale of Two Mechanisms: Student Placement," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 73-94, January.
    12. Kara, Tarik & Sonmez, Tayfun, 1996. "Nash Implementation of Matching Rules," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 425-439, February.
    13. Yan Chen & Tayfun Sönmez, 2004. "School Choice: An Experimental Study," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 622, Boston College Department of Economics.
    14. Pablo Guillen & Onur Kesten, 2012. "Matching Markets With Mixed Ownership: The Case For A Real‐Life Assignment Mechanism," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 53(3), pages 1027-1046, 08.
    15. Marek Pycia & M. Utku Ünver, 2009. "Incentive Compatible Allocation and Exchange of Discrete Resources," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 715, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 11 Mar 2014.
    16. Alvin E Roth, 2007. "Deferred Acceptance Algorithms: History, Theory, Practice, and Open Questions," Levine's Bibliography 843644000000000283, UCLA Department of Economics.
    17. Sebastian Braun & Nadja Dwenger & Dorothea Kübler, 2007. "Telling the Truth May Not Pay Off: An Empirical Study of Centralised University Admissions in Germany," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2007-070, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
    18. Kelso, Alexander S, Jr & Crawford, Vincent P, 1982. "Job Matching, Coalition Formation, and Gross Substitutes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1483-1504, November.
    19. Atila Abdulkadiroğlu & Yeon-Koo Che & Yosuke Yasuda, 2010. "Expanding “Choice” in School Choice," Levine's Working Paper Archive 661465000000000062, David K. Levine.
    20. Atila Abdulkadiroglu & Parag Pathak & Alvin E. Roth & Tayfun Sonmez, 2006. "Changing the Boston School Choice Mechanism," NBER Working Papers 11965, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    21. Roth, Alvin E, 1984. "Stability and Polarization of Interests in Job Matching," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(1), pages 47-57, January.
    22. Sonmez, Tayfun, 1997. "Manipulation via Capacities in Two-Sided Matching Markets," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 197-204, November.
    23. Atila Abdulkadiroglu & Yeon-Koo Che & Yosuke Yasuda, 2011. "Resolving Conflicting Preferences in School Choice: The "Boston Mechanism" Reconsidered," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(1), pages 399-410, February.
    24. Tayfun Sönmez & Tarik Kara, 1997. "Implementation of college admission rules (*)," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 197-218.
    25. Parag A. Pathak & Tayfun Sonmez, 2008. "Leveling the Playing Field: Sincere and Sophisticated Players in the Boston Mechanism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1636-52, September.
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    Cited by:
    1. Youngsub Chun & Manipushpak Mitra & Suresh Mutuswami, 2013. "Egalitarian Equivalence And Strategyproofness In The Queueing Problem," Discussion Papers in Economics 13/16, Department of Economics, University of Leicester.
    2. Nadja Dwenger & Dorothea Kübler & Georg Weizsäcker, 2014. "Flipping a Coin: Theory and Evidence," CESifo Working Paper Series 4740, CESifo Group Munich.
    3. Franz Diebold & Haris Aziz & Martin Bichler & Florian Matthes & Alexander Schneider, 2014. "Course Allocation via Stable Matching," Business & Information Systems Engineering, Springer, vol. 6(2), pages 97-110, April.

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