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Matching with Couples: Stability and Incentives in Large Markets

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  • Parag A. Pathak
  • Alvin E. Roth

Abstract

Accommodating couples has been a long-standing issue in the design of centralized labor market clearinghouses for doctors and psychologists, because couples view pairs of jobs as complements. A stable matching may not exist when couples are present. This article's main result is that a stable matching exists when there are relatively few couples and preference lists are sufficiently short relative to market size. We also discuss incentives in markets with couples. We relate these theoretical results to the job market for psychologists, in which stable matchings exist for all years of the data, despite the presence of couples. JEL Codes: C78, D47. Copyright 2013, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Parag A. Pathak & Alvin E. Roth, 2013. "Matching with Couples: Stability and Incentives in Large Markets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 128(4), pages 1585-1632.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:qjecon:v:128:y:2013:i:4:p:1585-1632
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    Cited by:

    1. Hatfield, John William & Kominers, Scott Duke, 2015. "Multilateral matching," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 156(C), pages 175-206.
    2. John Kennes & Daniel Monte & Norovsambuu Tumennasan, 2015. "Dynamic Matching Markets and the Deferred Acceptance Mechanism," Economics Working Papers 2015-23, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    3. Pęski, Marcin, 2017. "Large roommate problem with non-transferable random utility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 168(C), pages 432-471.
    4. Khare, Shashwat & Roy, Souvik, 2017. "Stability in Matching with Couples having Non-Responsive Preferences," Research Memorandum 007, Maastricht University, Graduate School of Business and Economics (GSBE).
    5. Péter Biró & Flip Klijn, 2013. "Matching With Couples: A Multidisciplinary Survey," International Game Theory Review (IGTR), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 15(02), pages 1-18.
    6. Thanh Nguyen & Rakesh Vohra, 2014. "Near Feasible Stable Matchings with Complementarities," PIER Working Paper Archive 14-028, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
    7. Nikhil Agarwal, 2015. "An Empirical Model of the Medical Match," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(7), pages 1939-1978, July.
    8. Nguyen, Thành & Peivandi, Ahmad & Vohra, Rakesh, 2016. "Assignment problems with complementarities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 165(C), pages 209-241.
    9. Chen, Yan & Jiang, Ming & Kesten, Onur & Robin, Stéphane & Zhu, Min, 2018. "Matching in the large: An experimental study," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 295-317.
    10. repec:oup:oxford:v:33:y:2017:i:4:p:541-571. is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Scott Duke Kominers & Alexander Teytelboym & Vincent P Crawford, 2017. "An invitation to market design," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 33(4), pages 541-571.
    12. Dur, Umut & Ikizler, Devrim, 2016. "Many-to-one matchings without substitutability," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 144(C), pages 123-126.
    13. Ashlagi, Itai & Roth, Alvin E., 2014. "Free riding and participation in large scale, multi-hospital kidney exchange," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 9(3), September.
    14. Fisher, James C.D. & Hafalir, Isa E., 2016. "Matching with aggregate externalities," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 1-7.
    15. Thanh Nguyen & Ahmad Peivandi & Rakesh Vohra, 2014. "One-Sided Matching with Limited Complementarities," PIER Working Paper Archive 14-030, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
    16. Hatfield, John William & Kojima, Fuhito & Narita, Yusuke, 2016. "Improving schools through school choice: A market design approach," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 166(C), pages 186-211.
    17. Tello, Benjamín, 2016. "Matching with contracts, substitutes and two-unit demand," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 146(C), pages 85-88.
    18. Andersson, Tommy & Ehlers, Lars & Martinello, Alessandro, 2018. "Dynamic Refugee Matching," Working Papers 2018:7, Lund University, Department of Economics.
    19. Hatfield, John William & Kominers, Scott Duke, 2017. "Contract design and stability in many-to-many matching," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 78-97.
    20. Itai Ashlagi & Alvin E. Roth, 2011. "Individual Rationality and Participation in Large Scale, Multi-Hospital Kidney Exchange," NBER Working Papers 16720, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    21. Kamada, Yuichiro & Kojima, Fuhito, 2017. "Stability concepts in matching under distributional constraints," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 168(C), pages 107-142.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D02 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Institutions: Design, Formation, Operations, and Impact
    • J01 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics: General

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