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An individual-based approach to measurement of multiple-period mobility for nominal and ordinal variables

Listed author(s):
  • Sanghamitra Bandyopadhyay
  • Gaston Yalonetzky

This paper discusses meanings of intra-generational mobility when variables take values corresponding to either unordered or ordered categories. We propose concepts of maximum and minimum mobility, along with mobility-inducing transformations and related desirable properties. Then we axiomatically characterize indices of individual mobility and social mobility. Our first set of concepts, properties and indices, measures mobility as diversity, unpredictability or instability in people’s status along the accounting period. This notion of mobility is relevant and applicable to both nominal and ordinal variables. Our second set measures mobility as average distance travelled across categories from one period to the next. This latter notion is only relevant for ordinal variables. We apply these indices to measure the extent of mobility in the responses to subjective wellbeing questions in the United Kingdom, using the British Household Panel Survey.

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File URL: http://webspace.qmul.ac.uk/pmartins/CGRWP65.pdf
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Paper provided by Queen Mary, University of London, School of Business and Management, Centre for Globalisation Research in its series Working Papers with number 65.

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Date of creation: Jul 2016
Handle: RePEc:cgs:wpaper:65
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  1. Javier Ruiz-Castillo, 2004. "The measurement of structural and exchange income mobility," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 2(3), pages 219-228, September.
  2. Van de Gaer, Dirk & Schokkaert, Erik & Martinez, Michel, 2001. "Three Meanings of Intergenerational Mobility," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 68(272), pages 519-537, November.
  3. Parker, Simon C & Rougier, Jonathan, 2001. "Measuring Social Mobility As Unpredictability," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 68(269), pages 63-76, February.
  4. Kai-yuen Tsui, 2009. "Measurement of income mobility: a re-examination," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 33(4), pages 629-645, November.
  5. Shorrocks, A F, 1976. "Income Mobility and the Markov Assumption," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 86(343), pages 566-578, September.
  6. Maasoumi, Esfandiar & Zandvakili, Sourushe, 1986. "A class of generalized measures of mobility with applications," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 97-102.
  7. Gary Fields, 2010. "Does income mobility equalize longer-term incomes? New measures of an old concept," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 8(4), pages 409-427, December.
  8. Fields, Gary S. & Ok, Efe A., 1996. "The Meaning and Measurement of Income Mobility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 349-377, November.
  9. Shorrocks, Anthony, 1978. "Income inequality and income mobility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 376-393, December.
  10. Shorrocks, A F, 1978. "The Measurement of Mobility," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(5), pages 1013-1024, September.
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