IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/11675.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Fractional Treatment Rules for Social Diversification of Indivisible Private Risks

Author

Listed:
  • Charles F. Manski

Abstract

Should a social planner treat observationally identical persons identically? This paper shows that uniform treatment is not necessarily desirable when a planner has only partial knowledge of treatment response. Then there may be reason to implement a fractional treatment rule, with positive fractions of the observationally identical persons receiving different treatments. The planning problems studied here share some important features: treatment is individualistic, social welfare is a strictly increasing function of a population mean outcome, and outcomes depend on an unknown state of nature. They differ in the information that the planner has about the state of nature and in how he uses this information to make treatment choices. In particular, I compare treatment choice using Bayes rules and the minimax-regret criterion. Following the analysis, I put aside the literal notion of a planner who makes decisions on behalf of society and consider the feasibility of implementing fractional treatment rules in functioning democracies.

Suggested Citation

  • Charles F. Manski, 2005. "Fractional Treatment Rules for Social Diversification of Indivisible Private Risks," NBER Working Papers 11675, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:11675
    Note: PE
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w11675.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Keisuke Hirano & Jack R. Porter, 2009. "Asymptotics for Statistical Treatment Rules," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 77(5), pages 1683-1701, September.
    2. Manski, Charles F., 2000. "Identification problems and decisions under ambiguity: Empirical analysis of treatment response and normative analysis of treatment choice," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 95(2), pages 415-442, April.
    3. Manski, Charles F., 2007. "Minimax-regret treatment choice with missing outcome data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 139(1), pages 105-115, July.
    4. Steven Shavell & A. Mitchell Polinsky, 2000. "The Economic Theory of Public Enforcement of Law," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(1), pages 45-76, March.
    5. Yi Cheng, 2003. "Choosing sample size for a clinical trial using decision analysis," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 90(4), pages 923-936, December.
    6. Dehejia, Rajeev H., 2005. "Program evaluation as a decision problem," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 141-173.
    7. Diamond, Peter & Sheshinski, Eytan, 1995. "Economic aspects of optimal disability benefits," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 1-23, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
    • H0 - Public Economics - - General

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    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:nbr:nberwo:11675. 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: () or (Joanne Lustig). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    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.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with 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.