IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Axiomatic measurement of multidimensional well-being inequality: Some distributional questions


  • Croci Angelini, Elisabetta
  • Michelangeli, Alessandra


This paper focuses on two main issues which are crucial for improving on the analysis of multidimensional inequality: the effect of both the dispersion of well-being attributes across individuals and the interaction among attributes on the measurement of multidimensional well-being. To approach these distributional questions we rely on the Atkinson, Kolm, Sen (hereafter AKS) methodology, which defines a multidimensional inequality index consistent with the Pigou–Dalton principle. This index can be decomposed into univariate indexes belonging to the class of AKS indexes, and a residual term accounting for the interaction across dimensions. The empirical application investigates the evolution of inequality in well-being across some EU countries between 1994 and 2001.

Suggested Citation

  • Croci Angelini, Elisabetta & Michelangeli, Alessandra, 2012. "Axiomatic measurement of multidimensional well-being inequality: Some distributional questions," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 41(5), pages 548-557.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:soceco:v:41:y:2012:i:5:p:548-557 DOI: 10.1016/j.socec.2012.04.006

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mozaffar Qizilbash, 2004. "On the Arbitrariness and Robustness of Multi-Dimensional Poverty Rankings," Journal of Human Development and Capabilities, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(3), pages 355-375.
    2. Abul Naga, Ramses H. & Geoffard, Pierre-Yves, 2006. "Decomposition of bivariate inequality indices by attributes," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 90(3), pages 362-367, March.
    3. Gary S. Becker & Tomas J. Philipson & Rodrigo R. Soares, 2005. "The Quantity and Quality of Life and the Evolution of World Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 277-291, March.
    4. Cheti Nicoletti & Franco Peracchi, 2005. "Survey response and survey characteristics: microlevel evidence from the European Community Household Panel," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 168(4), pages 763-781.
    5. Thibault Gajdos & John Weymark, 2005. "Multidimensional generalized Gini indices," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 26(3), pages 471-496, October.
    6. A. B. Atkinson & F. Bourguignon, 1982. "The Comparison of Multi-Dimensioned Distributions of Economic Status," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 49(2), pages 183-201.
    7. Boland, Philip J. & Proschan, Frank, 1988. "Multivariate arrangement increasing functions with applications in probability and statistics," Journal of Multivariate Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 286-298, May.
    8. Sen, Amartya, 1973. "On Economic Inequality," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198281931, June.
    9. Nicola Fuchs-Schuendeln & Dirk Krueger & Mathias Sommer, 2010. "Inequality Trends for Germany in the Last Two Decades: A Tale of Two Countries," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 13(1), pages 103-132, January.
    10. Andrea Brandolini, 2007. "On Synthetic Indices Of Multidimensional Well-Being: Health And Income Inequalities In France, Germany, Italy And The United Kingdom," CHILD Working Papers wp07_07, CHILD - Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic economics - ITALY.
    11. Marco Brambilla & Alessandra Michelangeli & Eugenio Peluso, 2013. "Equity in the City: On Measuring Urban (Ine)quality of Life," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 50(16), pages 3205-3224, December.
    12. Antonio Di Paolo, 2012. "Parental Education And Family Characteristics: Educational Opportunities Across Cohorts In Italy And Spain," Revista de Economia Aplicada, Universidad de Zaragoza, Departamento de Estructura Economica y Economia Publica, vol. 20(1), pages 119-146, Spring.
    13. Decancq, Koen & Decoster, André & Schokkaert, Erik, 2009. "The Evolution of World Inequality in Well-being," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 11-25, January.
    14. Bosmans, Kristof & Lauwers, Luc & Ooghe, Erwin, 2009. "A consistent multidimensional Pigou-Dalton transfer principle," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(3), pages 1358-1371, May.
    15. Tsui Kai-Yuen, 1995. "Multidimensional Generalizations of the Relative and Absolute Inequality Indices: The Atkinson-Kolm-Sen Approach," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 251-265, October.
    16. Maria Ana Lugo, 2005. "Comparing Multidimensional Indices of Inequality: methods and application," Working Papers 14, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
    17. Maria Ana Lugo & Koen Decancq, 2009. "Measuring Inequality of Well-Being with a Correlation-Sensitive Multidimensional Gini Index," Economics Series Working Papers 459, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    18. François Bourguignon & Satya Chakravarty, 2003. "The Measurement of Multidimensional Poverty," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 1(1), pages 25-49, April.
    19. Suman Seth, 2013. "A class of distribution and association sensitive multidimensional welfare indices," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 11(2), pages 133-162, June.
    20. Atkinson, Anthony B., 1970. "On the measurement of inequality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 244-263, September.
    21. Dutta, Bhaskar, 2002. "Chapter 12 Inequality, poverty and welfare," Handbook of Social Choice and Welfare,in: K. J. Arrow & A. K. Sen & K. Suzumura (ed.), Handbook of Social Choice and Welfare, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 12, pages 597-633 Elsevier.
    22. Serge-Christophe Kolm, 1977. "Multidimensional Egalitarianisms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 91(1), pages 1-13.
    23. A. Atkinson, 2003. "Multidimensional Deprivation: Contrasting Social Welfare and Counting Approaches," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 1(1), pages 51-65, April.
    24. Pestieau, Pierre, 2005. "The Welfare State in the European Union: Economic and Social Perspectives," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199261024, June.
    25. Larry G. Epstein & Stephen M. Tanny, 1980. "Increasing Generalized Correlation: A Definition and Some Economic Consequences," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 13(1), pages 16-34, February.
    26. Sami Bibi, 2004. "Comparing Multidimensional Poverty between Egypt and Tunisia," Cahiers de recherche 0416, CIRPEE.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Rolf Aaberge & Andrea Brandolini, 2014. "Multidimensional poverty and inequality," Discussion Papers 792, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
    2. Michelangeli, Alessandra & Peluso, Eugenio, 2016. "Cities and Inequality," REGION, European Regional Science Association, vol. 3, pages 47-60.

    More about this item


    Well-being; Inequality indicators; European Union;

    JEL classification:

    • D30 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - General
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:soceco:v:41:y:2012:i:5:p:548-557. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.