IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Economics of Matching: Stability and Incentives


  • Alvin E. Roth

    (Department of Business Administration, University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois 61801)


This paper considers some game-theoretic aspects of matching problems and procedures, of the sort which involve matching the members of one group of agents with one or more members of a second, disjoint group of agents, ail of whom have preferences over the possible resulting matches. The main focus of this paper is on determining the extent to which matching procedures can be designed which give agents the incentive to honestly reveal their preferences, and which produce stable matches.Two principal results are demonstrated. The first is that no matching procedure exists which always yields a stable outcome and gives players the incentive to reveal their true preferences, even though procedures exist which accomplish either of these goals separately. The second result is that matching procedures do exist, however, which always yield a stable outcome and which always give all the agents in one of the two disjoint sets of agents the incentive to reveal their true preferences.

Suggested Citation

  • Alvin E. Roth, 1982. "The Economics of Matching: Stability and Incentives," Mathematics of Operations Research, INFORMS, vol. 7(4), pages 617-628, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormoor:v:7:y:1982:i:4:p:617-628
    DOI: 10.1287/moor.7.4.617

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    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:inm:ormoor:v:7:y:1982:i:4:p:617-628. 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: (Matthew Walls). 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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.