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Measuring the cohesiveness of preferences: an axiomatic analysis

  • Jorge Alcalde-Unzu


  • Marc Vorsatz


In this paper, we axiomatically study how to measure the similarity of preferences in a group of individuals. For simplicity, we refer to this as the cohesiveness. First, we provide axioms that characterize a family of linear and additive measures whose intersection is a partial ordinal criterion similar to first order stochastic dominance. The introduction of some additional properties isolates a one-parameter subfamily. This parameter evaluates the effect on the cohesiveness if one individual changes his ranking on a single pair of objects, as a function of how many of the remaining individuals in the group rank the first object over the second and vice versa. Finally, we characterize the focal measures of this subfamily separately showing that they coincide with measures constructed using two, at first sight, totally different approaches suggested in the literature. Copyright Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

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Article provided by Springer in its journal Social Choice and Welfare.

Volume (Year): 41 (2013)
Issue (Month): 4 (October)
Pages: 965-988

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Handle: RePEc:spr:sochwe:v:41:y:2013:i:4:p:965-988
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  1. Daniel Eckert & Christian Klamler & Johann Mitlöhner & Christian Schlötterer, 2006. "A distance-based comparison of basic voting rules," Central European Journal of Operations Research, Springer, vol. 14(4), pages 377-386, December.
  2. Robert Hutchens, 2004. "One Measure of Segregation," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 45(2), pages 555-578, 05.
  3. Kranich, Laurence, 1996. "Equitable Opportunities: An Axiomatic Approach," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 131-147, October.
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  5. Wade D. Cook & Lawrence M. Seiford, 1982. "On the Borda-Kendall Consensus Method for Priority Ranking Problems," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 28(6), pages 621-637, June.
  6. Wade D. Cook & Lawrence M. Seiford, 1978. "Priority Ranking and Consensus Formation," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 24(16), pages 1721-1732, December.
  7. Christian Klamler, 2008. "A distance measure for choice functions," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 30(3), pages 419-425, April.
  8. Fryer, Roland & Echenique, Federico, 2007. "A Measure of Segregation Based on Social Interactions," Scholarly Articles 2958220, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  9. Atkinson, Anthony B., 1970. "On the measurement of inequality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 244-263, September.
  10. Esteban, J. & Ray, D., 1993. "On the Measurement of Polarization," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 221.93, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  11. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521825511 is not listed on IDEAS
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