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Measuring capabilities with random scale models. Women’s freedom of movement

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  • Andreassen, Leif

    ()

  • Dagsvik, John

    ()

  • Di Tommaso, Maria Laura

    ()
    (University of Turin)

Abstract

Sen’s capability approach distinguishes between what people are free to do and to be (their ‘capabilities’) and what they do and who they are (their ‘functionings’). In the capability approach,individuals’ well-being is evaluated not only in terms of achieved functionings, but also in terms of the freedom to choose between different functionings. I t implies that individuals with the same observed functionings may have different well-being because their choice sets (i.e. capabilities) are different. The measurement of capabilities is difficult because they are not observed. In this paper, we measure the capability of Italian women to move freely even if we only observe the realized choices. In order to distinguish between the latent capabilities of movement and the observed functionings, we adopt a new methodology based on the theory of random scale models. The data set is selected from a domestic violence survey of 25,000 Italian women for year 20 06. We demonstrate that such models can offer a suitable framework for measuring well-being freedom and therefore capabilities. In particular, we find out that the percentage of women who are predicted to be restricted in their freedom of movement is about 25% . Moreover, if all women were unconstrained, 16.4 percent of them would choose to do more activities, i.e to have more freedom of movement.

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File URL: http://www.unito.it/unitoWAR/ShowBinary/FSRepo/D031/Allegati/WP2013Dip/WP_34_2013.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Turin in its series Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers with number 201334.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:uto:dipeco:201334

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  1. Paul Anand & Graham Hunter & Ian Carter & Keith Dowding & Francesco Guala & Martin Van Hees, 2009. "The Development of Capability Indicators," Journal of Human Development and Capabilities, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(1), pages 125-152.
  2. Sen, Amartya, 1997. "On Economic Inequality," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198292975, October.
  3. Maria Laura Di Tommaso, 2006. "Measuring the well being of children using a capability approach An application to Indian data," CHILD Working Papers wp05_06, CHILD - Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic economics - ITALY.
  4. Di Tommaso, M. L. & Shima, I. & Strøm, S. & Bettio, F., 2007. "As bad as it gets: Well being deprivation of sexually exploited trafficked women," Memorandum 09/2007, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  5. Bloch, Francis & Rao, Vijayendra, 2000. "Terror as a bargaining instrument : a case study of dowry violence in rural India," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2347, The World Bank.
  6. Anand, Paul & Krishnakumar, Jaya & Tran, Ngoc Bich, 2011. "Measuring welfare: Latent variable models for happiness and capabilities in the presence of unobservable heterogeneity," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(3-4), pages 205-215, April.
  7. Paul Anand & Martine Durand & James Heckman, 2011. "Editorial: The measurement of progress—some achievements and challenges," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 174(4), pages 851-855, October.
  8. Anna Aizer, 2010. "The Gender Wage Gap and Domestic Violence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1847-59, September.
  9. Ingrid Robeyns, 2003. "Sen'S Capability Approach And Gender Inequality: Selecting Relevant Capabilities," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(2-3), pages 61-92.
  10. Cristina Santos, 2013. "Costs of Domestic Violence: A Life Satisfaction Approach," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 34, pages 391-409, 09.
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