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Private versus public consumption within groups : testing the nature of goods from aggregate data

We study the testability implications of public versus private consumption. The distinguishing feature of our approach is that we start from a revealed preference characterization of collectively rational behavior. Remarkably, we find that assumptions regarding the public or private nature of specific goods do have testability implications, even if one only observes the aggregate group consumption. In fact, these testability implications apply as soon as the analysis includes three goods and four obervations. This stands in sharp contrast with existing results that start from a differential characterization of collectively rational behavior. In our opinion, our revealed preference approach obtains stronger testability conclusions because it focuses on a global characterization of collective rationality, whereas the differential approach starts from a local characterization.

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Paper provided by Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne in its series Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne with number 10090.

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Length: 17 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mse:cesdoc:10090
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  1. Diewert, W E, 1973. "Afriat and Revealed Preference Theory," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(3), pages 419-25, July.
  2. Chiappori, Pierre-Andre, 1992. "Collective Labor Supply and Welfare," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(3), pages 437-67, June.
  3. Laurens Cherchye & Bram De Rock & Frederic Vermeulen, 2010. "An Afriat theorem for the collective model of household consumption," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/131711, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  4. Cherchye, L.J.H. & de Rock, B. & Vermeulen, F.M.P., 2004. "The Collective Model of Household Consumption : A Nonparametric Characterization," Discussion Paper 2004-76, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  5. A. Fostel & H. Scarf & M. Todd, 2004. "Two new proofs of Afriat’s theorem," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 24(1), pages 211-219, 07.
  6. Martin Browning & Pierre-Andre Chiappori, 1994. "Efficient Intra-Household Allocations: a General Characterization and Empirical Tests," Department of Economics Working Papers 1994-02, McMaster University.
  7. William T. Harbaugh & Kate Krause & Timothy R. Berry, 2001. "GARP for Kids: On the Development of Rational Choice Behavior," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1539-1545, December.
  8. Pollak, R.A., 1990. "Distinguished Floow: Houthakker'S Contributions To Economics," Working Papers 90-06, University of Washington, Department of Economics.
  9. Chiappori, P.A. & Ekeland, I., 2006. "The micro economics of group behavior: General characterization," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 130(1), pages 1-26, September.
  10. Cherchye, L.J.H. & de Rock, B. & Sabbe, J. & Vermeulen, F.M.P., 2008. "Nonparametric Tests of Collectively Rational Consumption Behavior : An Integer Programming Procedure," Discussion Paper 2008-2, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  11. Laurens Cherchye & Bram De Rock & Frederic Vermeulen, 2011. "The Revealed Preference Approach to Collective Consumption Behaviour: Testing and Sharing Rule Recovery," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 78(1), pages 176-198.
  12. Hans Gersbach & Hans Haller, 2004. "When Inefficiency Begets Efficiency," CESifo Working Paper Series 1197, CESifo Group Munich.
  13. Chiappori, Pierre-Andre, 1988. "Rational Household Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 63-90, January.
  14. Sabrina Bruyneel & Laurens Cherchye & Bram De Rock, 2012. "Collective consumption models with restricted bargaining weights: an empirical assessment based on experimental data," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 10(3), pages 395-421, September.
  15. Varian, Hal R, 1982. "The Nonparametric Approach to Demand Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 945-73, July.
  16. Sippel, Reinhard, 1997. "An Experiment on the Pure Theory of Consumer's Behaviour," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(444), pages 1431-44, September.
  17. P.-A. Chiappori & I. Ekeland, 2009. "The Microeconomics of Efficient Group Behavior: Identification," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 77(3), pages 763-799, 05.
  18. Kate Krause & Timothy Berry & William Harbaugh, 2001. "Garp for kids: On the development of rational choice behavior," Artefactual Field Experiments 00056, The Field Experiments Website.
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