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A Generalized Index of Fractionalization


The goal of this paper is to characterize a measure of diversity among individuals, which we call generalized fractionalization index, that uses information on similarities among individuals. We show that the generalized index is a natural extension of the widely used ethno-linguistic fractionalization index and is alsosimple tocompute. The paper offers some empirical illustrations on how the new index can be operationalized and what difference it makes as compared to standard indices. These applications pertain to the pattern of diversity in the United States across states.

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Article provided by London School of Economics and Political Science in its journal Economica.

Volume (Year): 78 (2011)
Issue (Month): 312 (October)
Pages: 723-750

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Handle: RePEc:bla:econom:v:78:y:2011:i:312:p:723-750
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  11. Alesina, Alberto & Devleeschauwer, Arnaud & Wacziarg, Romain & Kurlat, Sergio & Easterly, William, 2003. "Fractionalization," Scholarly Articles 4553003, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  12. Baqir, Reza & Easterly, William & Alesina, Alberto, 1999. "Public Goods and Ethnic Divisions," Scholarly Articles 4551797, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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